Kaine, McConnell pushing FDA to implement new legal tobacco age

Sen. Tim Kaine said he is hopeful Democratic senators will soon reach agreement on two major...
Sen. Tim Kaine said he is hopeful Democratic senators will soon reach agreement on two major spending bills.(wdbj7)
Published: Mar. 14, 2022 at 1:33 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON D.C. (WDBJ) -US Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who worked together to pass legislation to raise the tobacco age from 18 to 21, are pushing the FDA to put forward the guidance needed to fully implement and enforce that change, according to Kaine’s team.

“We are concerned about the impact that the delay in issuing the final rule has had on enforcement of Tobacco 21. The Tobacco 21 legislation, if properly enforced, is an important tool to reduce the number of children in our country who attempt to access an age-restricted product, which if accessed, may lead to addiction to tobacco and nicotine products. However, without updated sales compliance regulations from the FDA, Congress cannot ensure retailers are abiding by the law,” said the senators in a letter to FDA Commissioner Robert Califf.

The senators are asking the FDA to respond within two weeks as to when a final rule will be issued about changing regulations along with their bill and how they plan to complete compliance checks to ensure the rule is enforced.

The National Youth Tobacco Survey found more than 2 million US teens say they use e-cigarettes. A quarter of those teens said they use e-cigarettes daily.

For full text of the letter click here.

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