Harper says it’s ‘ridiculous’ Canadians can’t bring alcohol across provincial borders

WATCH ABOVE: Stephen Harper calls fine ‘ridiculous’ for man who bought alcohol in Quebec and returned to New Brunswick.

It is “ridiculous” that Canadians can’t buy alcohol in one province and bring it across provincial borders, Conservative leader Stephen Harper said while taking questions from reporters Monday.

“My personal view, the view of our government is that’s ridiculous,” Harper said, as the crowd of party supporters erupted in applause behind him.

“That’s why we brought in federal regulation, it does require mirror legislation at the provincial level, a couple of provinces have proceeded with similar legislation, not all have. Obviously, I would in my campaign mode, non-partisan way, urge all provinces to adopt that legislation.”

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A court case involving a man who was fined for bringing booze across provincial borders in 2012 wrapped on Friday. Gerard Comeau was charged with illegally importing 14 cases of beer and three bottles of liquor that he bought in Quebec.  The 62-year-old steelworker was fined $292.50.

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The Conservatives, with all-party support, passed a bill in 2012 which allowed people to buy wine in one province and bring it over provincial borders.  But that legislation needs to be accompanied by similar provincial legislation for it to be effective. So far, only British Columbia and Manitoba have signed on.

In a statement, the Liberal party said they are “firmly committed” to working with the provinces to “further reduce internal trade barriers.”

– With files from The Canadian Press

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