Waxman's Tobacco Bill & Hookah Tobacco

Today, the House voted to put Rep. Henry Waxman's (D-Calif.) tobacco bill up for a vote. Waxman's bill seeks to give regulatory control over tobacco to the FDA and has specific stipulations that will have a tremendous impact on hookah tobacco:

"His bill wouldn't let the FDA ban nicotine or tobacco outright, but the agency would be able to regulate the contents of tobacco products, make public their ingredients, prohibit flavoring, require much larger warning labels and strictly control or prohibit marketing campaigns, especially those geared toward children." (Source)

The prohibition on flavoring tobacco means no menthol cigarettes and no flavored pipe or hookah tobacco! What is hookah without flavored tobacco?

The Supreme Court ruled in 2000 that the FDA does not have the authority to regulate tobacco, but Waxman and Senator Edward Kennedy (D-Mass) have worked tirelessly to change that. Considering the FDA's recent track record of failures in monitoring food safety, I can't imagine what they'll do with tobacco.

So, hookah smokers, now is the time to step up to the plate and let our voices be heard. Get on the phone and call your state's senators, both of them, and your district's Congressional representative before the opportunity passes by. Your voice counts!

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