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Costco Leads Fight To Privatize Wash. Liquor Sales


And in Washington State today, voters are deciding whether to privatize the sale of hard liquor. Now spirits are only available through state-run or contract liquor stores. Leading the fight to end the state's monopoly is the big wholesaler Costco. From the Northwest News Network, Austin Jenkins reports.

AUSTIN JENKINS, BYLINE: The Costco-backed measure would close state stores and allow some 1,400 private retailers to get in the business. At its heart, Initiative 1183 is a deregulation fight. But turn on the TV and you'll see dueling ads featuring firefighters and nurses.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV ADS) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."