Cigarette Tax

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Increasing cigarette taxes is a win-win situation for everyone if you ask me, however I am not a smoker. I suppose if I were I may think differently. It is a health win that reduces smoking and saves lives; a financial win that raises revenue and reduces health care costs; and a political win that is popular with the public.

On February 4, 2009, Congress enacted, and President Obama signed into law, a 62 cent increase in the federal cigarette tax, along with increases in other tobacco taxes, to fund expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Now this to me is worthy cause. The federal cigarette tax will increase to $1.01 per pack on March 31, 2009. Sorry All you smokers out there!!!

Since January 1, 2002, 44 states and the District of Columbia have increased cigarette taxes, some more than once. The average state cigarette tax has increased from 43.4 cents to $1.21 a pack.

Here are a few reasons higher cigarette tax is good:

1) Less Kids Smoking
Studies, and experience in state after state, show that higher cigarette taxes are one of the most effective ways to reduce smoking among both youth and adults. Every 10 percent increase in the price of cigarettes reduces youth smoking by about seven percent and overall cigarette consumption by about four percent. 2) Higher Revenue

Every state that has significantly increased its cigarette tax has enjoyed substantial increases in revenue, even while reducing smoking. These funds have helped states balance budgets and fund essential services like health care and tobacco prevention programs. Contrary to tobacco industry arguments, cigarette tax increases are a reliable source of revenue. Higher cigarette taxes also save money by reducing smoking-caused health care costs. 3) Public Support For Tobacco Taxes

In national and state polls across the country, there is overwhelming public support for tobacco tax increases. Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike want elected...
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