American Lung Association Calls on U.S. House of Representatives to Pass Historic Tobacco Legislation

(July 30, 2008)

Washington, DC (July 30, 2008, 2008) – Today, for the first time in history, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on legislation that will end the decades-long special protections afforded to the tobacco industry. HR 1108 – bipartisan legislation introduced by Representatives Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Tom Davis (R-VA) – will cease the unfettered reign of Big Tobacco. 

The American Lung Association urges all Members of Congress to be on the right side of history by voting “yes” on HR 1108. The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act will give the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authority over the marketing, manufacture and distribution of tobacco products. Currently, no federal agency has authority to stop the tobacco companies from advertising to children, making misleading health claims about its deadly products or from manipulating the products to make them more addictive. More than 230 Members of Congress have cosponsored this legislation. 

Tobacco products kill over 438,000 Americans each year from such dreaded diseases as lung cancer, emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Each day, more than 1,300 kids become regular, daily smokers. Tobacco companies spend billions of dollars to create products like candy-flavored cigarettes in attempt to lure a new generation of tobacco consumers. We cannot allow this to continue.  

The American Lung Association thanks Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) and Chairmen Henry Waxman (D-CA), John Dingell (D-MI) and Frank Pallone (D-NJ) for their dedicated leadership and tireless efforts to make today’s historic vote a reality.  

About the American Lung Association: Beginning our second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to prevent lung disease and promote lung health. Lung disease death rates are currently increasing while other major causes of death are declining. The American Lung Association funds vital research on the causes of and treatments for lung disease. With the generous support of the public, the American Lung Association is “Improving life, one breath at a time.” For more information about the American Lung Association or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or log on to www.lung.org.