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It would seem obvious to most that large tobacco growing states like South Carolina would be the main voters against stricter legislation In actuality large tobacco companies like Philip Morris are some of the largest donators to the politicians in the non tobacco states As said in this article As long as Washington lawmakers are hooked on donations from Big Tobacco the industry has enough friends to ward off strong federal oversight This statement is very true For years now many bills and acts have been presented to congress such as the Healthy Kids Act which would allow the Food and Drug Administration to regulate tobacco create a major anti-smoking ad campaign provide no immunity for lawsuits against tobacco firms and curb youth smoking These bills typically get voted against by politicians that have taken or need the donations and support of the tobacco industry For example Rep Vic Fazio D-Calif who received 62500 since 1991 -- the ninth highest amount in contributions from tobacco companies among House members and the highest among lawmakers from states that dont grow tobacco voted against the Healthy Kids Act aswell as two tobacco bills introduced last year one to increase Food and Drug Administration funding and another to prohibit government funds from being used to pay for tobacco crop insurance The consumer advocacy group Public Citizen conducted a survey in 1999 that found that members who voted in favor of tobacco legislation received considerably more money than those who didnt Senators voting in favor of tobacco industry positions received as much as 15 times more money from tobacco company contributions in 1997 than their counterparts who didnt House members received nine times more money What politicians might be avoiding passing in Washington local governments are passing in their small and large counties One thousand five hundred and fifteen counties in the nation have banned smoking in all public places along with two states El Paso for example has
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