Free the Hops was not the reason the higher abv laws were passed. It takes a lot of time and money, mostly payed by Budweiser and Miller/Coors distributors throughout the state. Free the Hops is a non-profit organization that raised money in efforts to pay lobbyists to help in passing the law. The efforts by local distributors and political connections they have is the main reason why it passed. Higher alcohol beers means higher profits and more gross profit for each company distributing the beer. There are certain counties in the state that allow a higher volume package which sell 24oz cans but I believe that is there limit.
I've never fully understood the reason why Mississippi has 40's but there abv is still 6%. This will change to 8% by weight on July 2nd. That leaves Tennessee as the only other state in the Southeast that has a cap at 6%. Another state with awful alcohol laws is Kansas. Kansas has a cap at 3.2%, so basically everything tastes watered down.