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The State of Texas: Breweries Score Big Win In Court

Plus: Travis County’s whacky GOP Chairman gets kicked to the curb, Johnny Football’s next team might be north of the border, and Tony Romo has already taken his first game-ending hit.

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QUOTE OF THE DAY


“It is kind of our way of saying we are not paying homage to Oswald.”

—Christian Avanti to NBC DFW. Avanti hired an artist to paint a mural of Lee Harvey Oswald on the side of his barbershop in Dallas’s Oak Cliff neighborhood, where Oswald once lived. Naturally, neighbors aren’t too happy about it, but Avanti says that the art is just a part of Oak Cliff’s history. Plus, it’ll be accompanied by a John F. Kennedy quote when it’s finished, hence Avanti’s claim that the giant painting of Oswald’s face is not really an homage to the man who assassinated a president. 


BIG NEWS


Big Bend Brewing Company’s expanded facility in Alpine, Tex.
Big Bend Brewing Company’s expanded facility in Alpine, Texas.

Big Bend Brewing Company

Brewers Win Big
An Austin judge ruled in favor of a group of Texas breweries on Thursday, overturning a controversial state law passed in 2013 that kept beer makers from profiting off of their own distribution rights. According to the Dallas Morning News, the ruling in the lawsuit—which was filed by Granbury’s Revolver Brewery, Peticolas Brewing of Dallas, and Austin-based Live Oak Brewing—has statewide implications. It means Texas’s three-tiered system to regulate the state’s alcohol industry is basically broken up now. The system kept producers, distributors, and retailers separate from each other, supposedly in an effort to prevent organized crime from infiltrating the alcohol business. That was probably needed when Prohibition era-gangsters were running wild, but the 2013 law seemed like it came just a little too late. During a hearing last week, the state’s attorneys argued that repealing the law would lead to organized crime and “societal ills,” and that allowing breweries to get paid for their distribution rights would draw “unsavory characters” to the business and promote prostitution rings. The attorney even put forward a fictional scenario starring someone named “Distributor Al,” which was almost certainly a reference to Al Capone. Throughout the lawsuit, the breweries have said that they just wanted what they felt was fair: the opportunity to fully cash in on their own product. “This has been a long time coming,” Michael Peticolas, owner of Peticolas Brewing, said in a news release. “I’m proud to have my constitutional rights returned to me.” But there’s more on tap: according to the Houston Chronicle, the state will likely appeal the ruling.


MEANWHILE, IN TEXAS


Musical Chairs
Robert Morrow is out as Travis County GOP chairman. The guy has been a thorn in the party’s side ever since he was somehow elected to lead Republicans in one of Texas’s largest counties. Since coming into office in March, he’s been a goofball at best, and, at worst, a vulgar sexist who spins outlandish conspiracy theories and tweets like there’s no tomorrow. The Travis County GOP has pretty much neutered Morrow’s political power, but the last straw seems to have been his protest this week outside a rally held by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Morrow donned a jester’s hat (not unusual for him) and held a sign that accused Trump of raping children before being kicked out by security. According to the Austin American-Statesman, Travis County GOPers believe they can stage the coup because Morrow filed to run for president (he’s running on a platform of wet t-shirt contests at the White House. Yes, really), which they say is against a state law that says precinct chairmen of a political party can’t run for federal, state, or county office.

Johnny Canada
Could Johnny Manziel be headed to the land of maple leaves and mounties? It won’t not happen, according to the commissioner of the Canadian Football League, who said Manziel would be welcome in Canada so long as he could prove he’d be an “appropriate fit for its culture,” writes ESPN. How might Manziel look in the CFL? Let ESPN’s Kevin Seifert show you: “The most creative quarterback in the recent history of college football, let loose on a bigger field. He’s buying time for receivers to get open, toying with defenders trying to sack him, taking off downfield when needed and recovering his reputation as an elite-level playmaker.” Seifert says that a Manziel CFL comeback “makes all kinds of sense” on the surface, so long as he can end his “personal spiral.” He writes that “Manziel’s celebrity would inject energy” into the league and would be a boon for the CFL’s international marketing. One thing Seifert carelessly omits from his Manziel/CFL dream: Manziel’s facing criminal charges related to accusations of domestic violence against his girlfriend. That’s a big deal.

Oh No, Romo
Is the Texas Monthly cover cursed? On Friday morning, ESPN’s Ed Werner reported that the Dallas Cowboys will decide if quarterback Tony Romo needs an MRI or other tests after he was injured in an exhibition game against the Seattle Seahawks. In the third play of the game, Romo took a hit to the back from Seahawks’ defensive end Cliff Avril that left him writhing on the ground before being removed from the rest of the game. “That was probably as tough a hit as I’ve taken on my back in the last five years,” Romo told reporters afterward. Still, our cover boy assured the media that he totally could have jumped back in, but his team just wouldn’t let him. “I feel fine. Obviously it was a jolt to the back, and it was kind of a perfect storm for a perfect hit. But I’m fine. […] I could have come back in, but it was [Cowboys coach Jason] Garrett’s decision,” Romo said, according to USA Today. He looked pretty sturdy on our cover.


WHAT WE’RE READING


Did someone kill a Richardson couple’s dog because of their pro-Hillary Clinton sign? CBSDFW

UIW’s president may have made disparaging comments about minorities, prompting a mandatory medical leave San Antonio Express-News

A Republican member of the Electoral College from Texas might not cast his vote for Trump Politico

A Houston billionaire couple funded the Baltimore Police Department’s controversial secret aerial surveillance program Wall Street Journal

A San Antonio police officer was suspended for eating Whataburger instead of doing his job San Antonio Current

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