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North Carolina Faith Leaders Call on Sen. Burr to End Filibuster Threat of Legislation to Protect Kids From Tobacco
Date:1/15/2009

RALEIGH, N.C., Jan. 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A diverse coalition of clergy and lay members from faith organizations throughout North Carolina held a press conference today to call on Senator Richard Burr to end his opposition to legislation that would grant the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority over tobacco products. The legislation would protect kids from tobacco and save lives. Senator Burr has publicly threatened to filibuster the legislation if it was brought to the Senate floor for a vote. Congress is expected to consider the legislation in the coming months.

"We are shocked and deeply disappointed by Senator Burr's public statements that he plans to filibuster this measure," said Reverend Mark Creech, Executive Director, Christian Action League. "Senator Burr's threatened filibuster is one of the last remaining obstacles to saving so many lives from tobacco addiction through enactment of the FDA legislation. North Carolina faith leaders hope and pray that Senator Burr will drop his threat to block the bill. Both Senator Burr and Senator Kay Hagen should support the bill and help us save lives in our state and across the nation."

Despite all the death and disease they cause, tobacco products are virtually unregulated to protect consumers' health. This continuing lack of regulation allows the tobacco companies to market their deadly products to children, deceive consumers about the harm their products cause and resist even the most minimal steps to make their products less harmful.

The House of Representatives on July 30, 2008, approved the legislation by an overwhelming vote of 326 to 102. Six members of the North Carolina House delegation voted for the bill. It had 60 sponsors in the Senate, including 13 Republicans, but the Senate ran out of time to act due to the economic crisis. The legislation is also supported by more than 800 public health, faith and other organization
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SOURCE Faith United Against Tobacco
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