Congressional Caucus to End the Youth Vaping Epidemic Sends Bipartisan and Bicameral Letter Urging President Trump to Finalize E-Cigarette Flavor Guidance
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressmen Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-08) and Peter King (NY-02) led 26 Members of Congress, including Senators Dick Durbin, Richard Blumenthal, and Chris Van Hollen, in a bipartisan letter urging President Trump to stick to his original promise to implement a comprehensive guidance on e-cigarette flavors with no exclusions.
“The meteoric rise in youth vaping is a public health crisis threatening the health and safety of American youth,” said Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. “More than two months ago, the Trump administration promised to issue a compliance policy designed to clear the market of all flavored e-cigarettes, including mint and menthol flavors. Today, we are joining together across party lines to encourage the President to remain committed to his original promise.”
“Too often our children and adolescents are being exposed to the dangers of nicotine addiction,” said Congressman Peter King. “It is imperative that the Administration issue a compliance policy and work with Congress to end this epidemic and ensure the well-being of our youth.”
“I'm hoping President Trump cares more about children than he does about lobbying pressure from Big Tobacco and Big Vape companies,” Senator Dick Durbin said. “At stake is the health of more than five million kids who are now vaping in America. This epidemic demands action now, and the President must stick with his September promise to remove kid-friendly flavors—including mint and menthol—from the market immediately.”
The CDC's National Youth Tobacco Survey indicates that youth use of e-cigarettes has risen to an all-time high, as 27.5% of high school students reporting vaping. That is a 32% increase in the past year and a 135% increase over two years. 81.5% of respondents aged 12–17 reported that they used e-cigarettes because “they come in flavors I like.” While e-cigarette supporters claim the products help some to quit smoking, the threat they pose to the health and safety of our youth far outweighs the personal preferences of adults.
Cosigners of the letter include Representatives Raja Krishnamoorthi, Peter King, Chris Stewart, Thomas Suozzi, Ted Lieu, Haley Stevens, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Harley Rouda, Julia Brownley, Angie Craig, Jamie Raskin, Matt Cartwright, Nita Lowey, Diana DeGette, Ben Ray Lujan, Lucille Roybal-Allard, Ro Khanna, Grace Meng, Josh Gottheimer, Barbara Lee, Mark DeSaulnier, and Jan Schakowsky; as well as Senators Richard Durbin, Richard Blumenthal, and Chris Van Hollen.
The letter is supported by Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, American Heart Association, American Lung Association, Truth Initiative, Parents Against Vaping e-Cigarettes (PAVe), Center on Addiction, Respiratory Health Association, American Association for Respiratory Care, Academy of General Dentistry, National Association of Elementary School Principals, Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health, American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, American Association for Cancer Research, American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, American Association of Women Dentists, Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs, Oncology Nursing Society, National Association for Secondary School Principals, National Alliance for Hispanic Health, Eta Sigma Gamma, The Society of Thoracic Surgeons, American Student Dental Association, Society for Public Health Education, American Society of Clinical Oncology, American Dental Association, American Association of Endodontists, American College of Cardiology.