Intoxicating liquids.

113. All fermented, distilled, or other intoxicating liquids456 passing into any State or remaining therein for use, consumption, sale, or storage, shall be subject to the laws of the State as if such liquids had been produced in the State.

HISTORICAL NOTE.—At the Adelaide session, Mr. Deakin moved, as an addition to the free-trade clause (sec. 92) the words “But nothing in this Constitution shall prevent any State from prohibiting the importation of any article or thing, the sale of which

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within the State has first been prohibited by the State.” The object was to enable the States to prevent the importation of articles—such as alcohol or opium—which it deemed hurtful. This was then postponed in order to proceed with the financial clauses. (Conv. Deb., Adel., pp. 875–7.) At a later stage, it having been suggested that the clause might affect the fiscal issue, and also that power ought to be given to regulate as well as to prohibit the sale, Mr. Deakin moved his amendment in this form:

“Nothing in this Constitution shall be construed to prevent any State from regulating the importation of opium or alcohol under conditions which are applicable as nearly as possible to the laws relating to opium and alcohol within the State.”

Mr. O'Connor opposed the amendment; partly because it was unnecessary, American decisions showing that retail sale within the State might be prohibited; and partly because the mention of these two articles might dangerously limit the police powers of the States with regard to other articles. After debate the amendment was negatived by 15 votes to 14. (Id. pp. 1140–8.)

During the statutory adjournment, the Legislative Assemblies of New South Wales and Victoria, and both Houses in South Australia, made suggestions substantially identical with Mr. Deakin's “opium and alcohol” proposal; and the Legislative Assembly of Victoria made a suggestion (practically identical with the Wilson Act—Note, § 456, infra) to add to the trade and commerce sub-clause these words:—

“Provided that all fermented, distilled, or other intoxicating liquors or liquids transported into any State or territory or remaining therein for use, consumption, sale, or storage therein, shall upon arrival in such State or territory be subject to the operation and effect of the laws of such State or territory to the same extent and in the same manner as though such liquors or liquids had been produced in such State or territory.”

At the Sydney session, Mr. Deakin moved the Victorian amendment, which after considerable debate was carried. (Conv. Deb., Syd., 1897, pp. 1037–59.) At the Melbourne session, before the first report, the provision was transferred, with verbal amendments, to a separate clause. A further drafting amendment was made after the fourth report.