Statement by Public Citizen President Joan Claybrook Praising Senator Conrad?s Approach to Federal Tobacco Legislation

Feb. 11, 1998

Statement by Public Citizen President Joan Claybrook Praising Senator Conrad?s Approach to Federal Tobacco Legislation

Senator Conrad has adopted the right approach to this issue: protect public health, reduce teen smoking, raise the price of tobacco products, and reject special protections.

Efforts to pass an industry-supported version of a tobacco deal are misguided. We are pleased that Senator Conrad and the members of his task force have rejected that ill-advised approach. With 300 national, state and local organizations in the Save Lives, Not Tobacco coalition, Public Citizen believes any national tobacco legislation should not give the tobacco industry unprecedented, special protections from responsibility for its deadly products and should not preempt the ability of state and local governments to continue their efforts to regulate tobacco and second-hand smoke.

The strong support demonstrated today for Senator Conrad?s approach shows that Congress does not need to make a deal with Big Tobacco in order to pass legislation in the public interest. We look forward to examining the entire bill.