Proposed Bill Would Lower Drinking Age in Minnesota

Duluth Lawmaker Co-Authored the Bill

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It’s not the first time a bill of its kind, one aimed at lowering the drinking age to 18, has been introduced in the Minnesota Legislature.

Just across the bridge in Wisconsin it’s already a law.

Anyone over 18-years-old can drink in a bar as long as they are supervised by someone over the age of 21.

Sponsors of the Minnesota bill told us it’s not about lowering the minimum drinking age to encourage fun, instead it’s about decreasing alcohol related accidents and fatalities.

Minnesota State Representative Erik Simonson, said the real problem is that people are not educated when it comes to responsible drinking.

“Kids that turn age 21 are capable of walking into a bar, drinking and consuming alcohol to whatever extent they feel is right. Then they get in their car, leave the bar and drive away,” said Simonson.

The state representative said the greatest majority of people he is concerned about are 21 to 25-year-old’s who don’t drink sensibly and never learned how too.

Simonson is hopeful the proposed law allowing 18, 19 and 20-year-old’s to drink at bars with a guardian, parent or spouse over the age of 21 will ignite conversations among parents and kids.

“To (learn) to consume alcohol in a responsible fashion. Potentially that they’re going to pick up on learning some of the things that they should know before they drink after they turn 21,” said Simonson.

As for the proposed bill, legislators said it has been met with mixed reviews.

Simonson said he doesn’t think it will make it very far in the legislature.

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