The ink from Gov. Bill Haslam's signing pen had barely dried Thursday (that expression is a cliche, but in this case it's pretty close to being true), and Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey was already musing that lawmakers may be forced to revisit wine in grocery stores next year.
The leader of the state Senate told reporters on Thursday afternoon that he expects wine buyers to be so disappointed that they'll have to wait until July 1, 2016, to pick up a bottle at their neighborhood supermarket that they'll pressure legislators to move up the start of sales to Jan. 1, 2016, or even the summer of 2015. Liquor stores insisted on the long rollout, but Ramsey, R-Blountville, doubts consumers will sympathize.
"I just think that people won't understand why grocery stores agreed to a year and a half delay," he said. "When we come back in January, that may be revisited. … That's the one thing that I think, politically, we'll hear about from people."
"I don't have that on my agenda at all. I'm just talking political reality," he added. "I won't have to be the one (to sponsor the bill). They'll be lined up to file it. That's just my prediction. Everyone will want to be the one to carry that."