Tobacco Free Kids and Philip Morris: A Special Relationship?

Three and a half million dollars.

That, according to Open Secrets, is what Philip Morris has spent lobbying this year.

It’s just over three times what the second biggest company company spent.It’s also more than half of all the money spent on Tobacco lobbying in the US.

And what’s it spending the money on?

Here’s a good guess – the Tobacco Bill due to enter the senate next week.

The Tobacco Bill will lead to a defacto ban on safe alternatives to cigarettes like the electronic cigarette. That means smokers will have no choice but to smoke on regular cigarettes.

The Tobacco Bill will reduce advertising. That means smokers will only remember the most popular brands of cigarettes – which belongs to Philip Morris.

The Tobacco Bill will introduce new restrictions on cigarettes. Can you guess which is the only company to be ready for these restrictions?

Philip Morris has worked with Tobacco Free Kids on this bill.

Tobacco Free Kids is trying to argue that the bill manipulated by America’s largest tobacco company is designed for the good of the nation and not for the good of Philip Morris.

Let’s remember that this is the same company that spent 2 million dollars on a domestic violence program – and then 108 million dollars on a tv advertising campaign to tell us about it. (Source: Alternet.)

Yet Tobacco Free Kids seem untroubled by Philip Morris’s motives.

Here’s some facts to try and persuade them that they should not be working with Philip Morris.

  • More kids smoke Philip Morris’ Marlboro cigarettes than all other brands combined.
  • Philip Morris issued a report in the Czech Republic last year that argued early smoking deaths have “positive effects” because they save the government money.
  • While saying it doesn’t want kids to smoke, Philip Morris pressured Florida to stop some of its anti-tobacco ads, which have been among the most effective in the country.
  • Philip Morris has secretly helped or funded front groups in Florida and Washington that have been fighting measures to ensure smoke-free indoor workplaces and raise cigarette taxes.
  • Abroad, Philip Morris has hired underaged Marlboro girls who pass out free cigarettes to other children and sponsored concerts where cigarettes were handed to minors.

And the source of this information?

Tobacco Free Kids.

 

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