Michigan court grants stay of injunction forcing Michigan to allow out-of-state retailers to sell wine directly to customers until Supreme Court Decides Byrd.
Judge Tarnow has granted a stay of his injunction in the Lebamoff case prohibiting the State of Michigan from enforcing its protectionist statutes that prohibited out-of-state retailers from delivering wine when in-state retailers were allowed to make such deliveries. Judge Tarnow’s order entering the stay makes particular reference to the United States Supreme Court’s recent decision to grant certiorari in Tennessee Wine and Retailer’s Association v. Clayton Byrd, 883 F.3d 608 (6th Cir. 2018), cert. granted, (U.S. Sep. 27, 2018) (No. 18-96). Referencing that opinion, the Court explained that the decision:
[H]as created a great degree of uncertainty in the law governing the interplay of the Commerce Clause of the Twenty-first Amendment. Defendants’ argument that the Michigan Liquor Control Commission cannot properly regulate wine shipments into the State without legislative action is well taken. The Court is aware that legislative efforts to bring Michigan into compliance with the injunction may need to be duplicated after the Supreme Court’s ruling on Byrd, and that an environment of legal uncertainty is not ideal for well-reasoned lawmaking.
The order allows for a stay of the matter pending appeal, but notes that the stay of the injunction will only be stayed until the Supreme Court rules on Byrd.
This ruling should start to put to rest uncertainty about the importance of the Byrd decision. A companion case brought by the same plaintiff regarding similar interstate retailer issues is also pending in the 7th Circuit, perhaps we can anticipate a similar abeyance pending Byrd.
For those interested in the Lebamoff decision and its operative documents, back in the beginning of October we wrote about the Michigan Lebamoff decision and provided links to all the relevant documents in the case.