Senate Bill for FDA tobacco regulation may pass today. .

June 10, 2009 - After more than half a century of debate and discussion, it is likely that Congress will pass legislation bringing tobacco products under the regulatory authority of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

For Ted Kennedy's sake alone let's hope this is a good piece of legislation that will protect our children for years to come from the ravages of nicotine addiction. Citi bank tells shareholders that if the FDA begins to regulate the tobacco industry, it would make little difference; many concessions have been granted to get tobacco companies to buy into this legislation weakening the bill even further.

U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, a physician has suggested banning tobacco outright rather than the Senate passing the Family Smoking Prevention Tobacco Control Act. - that authorizes the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to restrict the manufacturing, marketing and sale of tobacco products. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK)..

Senator Coburn during floor debate: “If we really want to make a difference in health and we want to eliminate dependence on tobacco, what we have to do is to stop the addiction.”

Senator Richard Burr points out there is no healthy way to use tobacco.

Mike Leavitt, Health and Human Services Secretary in the Bush Administration: "Unlike the medical products FDA regulates, tobacco products cannot be made safe, and there is no medically established public health benefit associated with tobacco."

Some critics say the bill, largely the product of years of negotiation between cigarette giant Philip Morris and the advocacy group Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, does not go far enough. We find that Mike DeWine, the former Ohio senator helped arrange a series of negotiations between Philip Morris and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. "This is a big gift to Philip Morris and a big scam," said Joel L. Nitzkin, chairman of the tobacco-control task force of the American Association of Public Health Physicians. "Our initial impression was, 'Gee, this would be great.' But when we read through the entire 160 pages, we were horrified by what we saw." (U.S. House considers legislation for FDA to regulate tobacco..)

We worry that the legislation has been flawed because the biggest player (with over half of the tobacco market) in the tobacco industry has been directly involved in writing the bill that regulates their industry. It's been stated that Philip Morris's conversion to support some form of FDA regulation was key to the bill's passage. But is this true at present with the Democrats the solid majority in both houses of Congress and a Democratic president supporting tobacco regulation. Matthew L. Myers the President of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has even said, “The election of Barack Obama changes everything.” Revise Senate's Version FDA Tobacco Regulation Bill..

As Senator Michael B. Enzi (R-WY) has pointed out, "Poison peddlers shouldn’t get to decide how we as responsible legislators fight the war against their deadly products." U.S. Senator Senator Enzi went on to say that he wants to see some kind of legislation on tobacco but is opposed to the Kennedy measure. "It makes me leery when a tobacco company is backing this," he said. "Nothing changes in it without Philip Morris's approval." ENZI: SCIENCE, NOT POLITICS, SHOULD DRIVE TOBACCO REGULATION, Enzi: Peace Treaty with Philip Morris No Way to Win War on Tobacco.

Reference: Long Fight Over Tobacco Regulation in Last Round by Alicia Mundy, The Wall Street Journal, 6/10/2009.

Paper: U.S. - FDA tobacco regulation or a lock in Altria's dominant position in the market.., Samuel Garten, Ph.D., M.S., M.S. and R. Victor Falkner, M.A., M.S., M.A.L.S.

Archive of Some Supporting Documentation: U.S. House committee approves FDA tobacco regulation bill..; U.S. House considers legislation for FDA to regulate tobacco..; FDA regulation the other shoe to drop..; U.S. House committee approves FDA tobacco regulation bill..; U.S. House considers legislation for FDA to regulate tobacco..; U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce - legislation to regulate tobacco..; Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids - Need for FDA Regulation of Tobacco..; February 2009 - legislation FDA to regulate tobacco..; FDA Regulation Likely for Tobacco - Let's Do It RIGHT..; President--Elect Barack Obama and Tobacco..; Revise Senate's Version FDA Tobacco Regulation Bill..; FDA tobacco regulation - bill distorted in current form..; AWMA urges grassroots effort to defeat FDA tobacco regulation and SCHIP.."; More - Lorillard-Newport - FDA proposed tobacco regulation..; FDA Tobacco Regulation Bill Overwhelmingly Passed U.S. House..; House to Vote on FDA Regulation of Tobacco..; Bush administration opposes legislation to give FDA authority to regulate tobacco products...; With U.S. FDA tobacco regulations on the horizon Altria already preparing to circumvent the law..; Public health experts are questioning why menthol flavoring in cigarettes, received special protection as Congress tries to regulate tobacco..; Lorillard Tobacco opposes US FDA bill to regulate tobacco..; FDA regulation moves a step closer..; On Tuesday April 1, 1970 President Richard Nixon signed a measure banning cigarette advertising on radio and television, to take effect in January 1,..; FDA regulatory control tobacco bill is voted forward..; Reject Proposed Legislation That Would Add Responsibility For Tobacco Regulation to the FDA..; FDA Head: 'No' to Tobacco Cigarettes too "inherently dangerous" to regulate; would "undermine mission."; Federal tobacco regulation backed...; On July 18, 2007, the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee postponed a vote on the bill - which would for the first time allow...