Virginia’s business community, including the beverage industry, is strongly opposed to the introduction of the Initiative and Referendum process in Virginia
America’s founders intentionally created a republic governed by elected representatives to prevent the excesses of pure democracy. In the states where direct legislation by referendum is common, the result is often voter confusion and cynicism. Special interest groups with the deepest pockets and the slickest advertising often win. Once the dust settles, if the voters have been lied to, who is held accountable? No one. In Virginia, the General Assembly is accountable. Virginia’s beverage industry joins in the opposition to initiative and referendum knowing that our industry could be a target.
Like many Virginia businesses, Virginia’s beverage distributors are however strong supporters of the Dillon Rule, which limits local government authority to those powers especially granted by the General Assembly. The last thing Virginians need is a patchwork of local regulations and taxing schemes that could provide roadblocks to doing business in the Commonwealth.