FDA Near to Gaining Regulatory Control Over Tobacco Products

American Lung Association Celebrates Historic Senate Vote

Washington, DC (June 11, 2009)

The American Lung Association cheers the Senate’s overwhelming vote in favor of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (HR 1256) today. 

“Today marks an historic culmination of a more than 20 year journey to provide the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) urgently needed regulatory control over the tobacco industry,” said Paul G. Billings American Lung Association Vice President for Policy and Advocacy. “This long overdue legislation will protect kids and reduce the terrible human and financial burden caused by tobacco use in this country.” 

The American Lung Association now strongly urges the U.S. House of Representatives to expedite passage of the U.S. Senate’s version of this bill so that it can be sent to President Obama for signature as soon as possible.

This important legislation will provide the FDA the authority to stop the tobacco companies from advertising to children, making misleading health claims about its deadly products and from manipulating their products to make them increasingly more addictive.

“While we celebrate this notable victory, we recognized that we have yet to win the war,” said Charles D. Connor, American Lung Association President and CEO. “As the FDA tobacco legislation continues its way to the President’s desk for signature, we will also continue our work for higher tobacco taxes, smokefree laws and funding of tobacco control and prevention programs at the state level to reduce tobacco use and save lives.”

The American Lung Association thanks Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA) for his longtime championship of this legislation and Senator Christopher Dodd (D-CT) for his leadership in ushering the bill through the Senate process. We also want to recognize Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), as well as Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), John Cornyn (R-TX), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Dick Lugar (R-IN) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) for their instrumental roles in today’s victory.     

About the American Lung Association
Now in its second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. With your generous support, the American Lung Association is “Fighting for Air” through research, education and advocacy. For more information about the American Lung Association, a Charity Navigator Four Star Charity and holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or visit www.lung.org