Senators introduce bipartisan bill to raise the federal smoking age to 21

Sens. Mitch McConnell and Tim Kaine plan to introduce a bill Monday that will raise the federal minimal age to buy tobacco to 21 in hopes of curbing what regulators are calling an “epidemic” of stripling vaping.

Both Senate Majority Leader McConnell, R-Ken., and Kaine, D-Va., hail from tobacco-producing states. A bipartisan group of lawmakers remaining month launched comparable legal guidelines, which has gained backing from public nicely being groups like the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the American Heart Association and the American Lung Association.

Fourteen states and a complete bunch of native governments have already raised the age. Cigarette and vaping giants Altria, British American Tobacco and Juul are actively supporting these efforts.

Ninety % of cigarette individuals who smoke try their first cigarette sooner than they flip 18, in accordance to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. High faculty seniors who can legally buy tobacco merchandise would possibly share them with their associates, an issue that’s come into focus amid an unlimited surge in teen vaping.

In 2018, the amount of highschool faculty college students who talked about they at the second used tobacco merchandise elevated by about 38%, the CDC current in its annual National Youth Tobacco Survey. The firm blamed the improve on e-cigarettes. Use of the merchandise by highschool faculty college students in the remaining 30 days surged by practically 78%, prompting the FDA to declare teen vaping an “epidemic.”

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