Thursday, April 17, 2008
A new report issued by the American Lung Association of California shows tobacco companies have spent $2 million to lobby state lawmakers during the past year. Association spokesman Paul Knepprath says 37 Assembly-members and 16 Senators received contributions from tobacco companies.
Knepprath: The most important thing about the report that we are issuing is that Philip Morris spent more in the last part of 2007 lobbying against the governor and speaker's health reform bill. They spent about $345,000 and ultimately that bill went down to defeat.
That health care reform measure killed by lawmakers included plans to hike the state cigarette tax by $1.75. Knepprath says California has made progress to reduce tobacco use but four-million people still smoke statewide. He says cigarette companies spend about a million dollars a day advertising their products.