No cold beer sales in Indiana gas stations, rules 7th Circuit

Customers in Ohio's neighbor to the west still can't purchase cold beer at grocery stores, gas stations and convenience stores, according to a federal appeals court. The Indiana Business Journal reports that the 7th Circuit upheld Indiana's law limiting the sale of cold beer to licensed liquor stores as constitutional this week.

Appellants include the Indiana Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association, or IPCA, among other retailers. They had originally filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana in May 2013, alleging that the law violated the Commerce Clause and the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, as well as provisions of the Indiana Constitution. The district court found that there was a rational basis for the law, as the state had a legitimate interest in limiting alcohol sales and preventing the sale of "immediately consumable beer" to underage individuals.

The only issue on appeal was whether the law violated the equal protection clause. The 7th Circuit upheld the lower court's ruling, finding that appellants didn't negate "every conceivable basis" for the law and stating that appellants policy arguments are better suited for the Indiana legislature, and not the federal courts.