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AARC Says No to Cigar Legislation

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September 13, 2011

The AARC has joined 39 other leading organizations in a new letter asking members of Congress to put a stop to legislation that would exempt many types of cigars from regulation under the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.

While the Act did give the FDA the authority over all tobacco, the law immediately applied only to cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, and components of roll your own cigarettes. However, the FDA has indicated that it will soon propose a rule bringing cigars under its authority.

H.R. 1639 would exempt many types of cigars from that authority, including those that appeal largely to younger smokers, such as flavored cigars and cigarillos.

“Congress should not now reverse course and exempt cigars, or certain types of cigars, from oversight,” notes the letter, which went out to members of the House of Representatives on Sept. 7. “Maintaining FDA’s current authority will ensure that any proposal about cigars is based on science and will be open to participation by all interested parties through Notice and Comment rulemaking.”

The letter writing campaign was organized by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.