As the federal government shutdown stretched on, a South Carolina lawmaker perhaps wanted to lighten the mood with some beer—and on a Friday, no less. But as he brought a six-pack of craft beer to the floor of the House Of Representatives last week, South Carolina representative Joe Cunningham was stopped by Capitol Police who told him he’d have to keep the beer away from the floor.
Politico reporter Laura Barrón-López tweeted about the incident, in which Rep. Cunningham was told he “wasn’t allowed” to take alcohol onto the floor. “It’s Friday too,” he reportedly said as he was turned away. According to WTKR, Cunningham had intended to give the beer to Rep. Peter A. DeFazio, who co-chairs the House Small Brewers Caucus. The role of the caucus is to provide Congress information about regulatory and economic issues facing small breweries. The beer in question was from two breweries in Cunningham’s district: Charleston’s Coast Brewing and cult-favorite Westbrook Brewing in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
“The Lowcountry has the best craft breweries in the country (don’t @ me Asheville). They’re run by entrepreneurs who create thousands of good local jobs and produce the finest beer around. I’ll never apologize for promoting them,” Cunningham later tweeted, defiantly.
Despite the kerfuffle, Rep. DeFazio heard Cunningham’s message loud and clear, tweeting: “Welcome aboard, @RepCunningham. First order of business—working on a rules change regarding six-packs on the House Floor.”
Finally—a Congressional initiative most Americans could get behind.