Pretzel Vendor: The new license fee for operating a pretzel stand outside the art museum is prohibitively expensive. Charging typical prices, I would need to sell an average of 25 pretzels per hour to break even. At my stand outside City Hall, with about as many passers-by as at the art museum, I average only 15 per hour. So I could not break even running a stand outside the art museum, much less turn a profit.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the pretzel vendor's argument?

A. The pretzel vendor does not sell anything other than pretzels.

B. People who visit the art museum are more likely to buy pretzels than are people who go to City Hall.

C. The license fee for operating a pretzel stand outside City Hall will not increase.

D. People who buy pretzels at pretzel stands are more likely to do so during lunch hour than at other times.

E. The city will grant more licenses for pretzel stands outside the art museum than the number it grants for stands outside City Hall.

Let’s understand the premises and conclusion of the pretzel vendor’s argument.

Premises

The new license fee for operating a pretzel stand outside the art museum is exorbitantly expensive.

Charging typical prices for pretzels, I would need to sell an average of 25 pretzels per hour to break even.

At my stand outside City Hall, with about as many passers-by as at the art museum, I average only 15 per hour.

Conclusion

So I could not break even running a stand outside the art museum, much less turn a profit.

We need to find an option that weakens the conclusion that the vendor wouldn’t be able to break even or turn a profit by running a stand outside the art museum.

A. The pretzel vendor does not sell anything other than pretzels.

This means that the only way for the vendor to make money is by selling pretzels because he does not sell anything else. With the information given in the stimulus, option A only strengthens the conclusion. Eliminate.

B. People who visit the art museum are more likely to buy pretzels than are people who go to City Hall.

The stimulus says- At my stand outside City Hall, with about as many passers-by as at the art museum, I average only 15 per hour.

Option B says that the people who visit the art museum are more likely to buy pretzels than are people who go to City Hall.

If people who visit the art museum are more likely to buy pretzels than are people who go to City Hall, then the vendor will be able to sell more than 15 per hour. This will add to the possibility to break even or even turn a profit.

Option B weakens the conclusion that the vendor will not be able to break even or turn a profit by setting a stand outside the art museum. Correct.

C. The license fee for operating a pretzel stand outside City Hall will not increase.

So? This does not impact the conclusion. Eliminate.

D. People who buy pretzels at pretzel stands are more likely to do so during lunch hour than at other times.

It doesn’t matter WHEN people buy pretzels at pretzel stands. Eliminate.

E. The city will grant more licenses for pretzel stands outside the art museum than the number it grants for stands outside City Hall.

The conclusion is that the vendor will not be able to break even or turn a profit by setting a stand outside the art museum. Option E does not impact the conclusion. Eliminate