November 18, 2019

Kaine Statement On Trump Administration Reversal On E-Cigarette Flavor Ban

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released a statement following multiple reports that President Trump has reversed course after promising to issue a ban on non-tobacco flavored e-cigarettes:  

“It’s unacceptable that President Trump is putting politics over public health by breaking his promise to ban flavored e-cigarettes. As the epidemic of youth e-cigarette use hurts more and more American families, there’s an urgent need for bold action to combat this crisis. Congress needs to succeed where Trump has failed by making policy changes that put kids’ health first – like our bipartisan legislation to raise the tobacco age to 21.”

In May, Kaine and Leader McConnell introduced the Tobacco-Free Youth Actlegislation to raise the nationwide minimum age to buy all tobacco products from 18 to 21. The bill passed the HELP Committee in June. Kaine praised the Trump Administration’s announcement of a ban on non-tobacco flavored e-cigarettes in September. He raised concerns over the policy’s delay in a letter to HHS Secretary Azar that he and his colleagues sent last month. The Senators urged the FDA to finalize its promised compliance policy and clear the market of unauthorized, flavored e-cigarette products. Over the past few months, Kaine has held roundtables in Arlington, Harrisonburg, and Henrico to discuss efforts to address the epidemic of youth e-cigarette use. 

During a recent HELP Committee hearing titled “Examining the Response to Lung Illnesses and Rising Youth Electronic Cigarette Use,” Kaine pressed the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products Director Mitch Zeller on the Trump Administration’s delay in issuing a final policy to address the growing epidemic of youth e-cigarette use. You can watch video of the exchange here.