Echoing misleading NY Post headline, Drudge reported that Clinton "supports national smoking ban"

››› ››› MATT GERTZ

Linking to a New York Post article, whose headline asserted, "Hill Eyes National Cig Curb," Matt Drudge wrote "Hillary Supports National Smoking Ban." In fact, as the Post article noted, "Asked whether the feds should impose a nationwide ban, Clinton deferred to local governments."

For its August 28 article on Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (D-NY) comments about anti-smoking laws at the August 27 Livestrong Presidential Cancer Forum, the New York Post used the misleading headline, "Hill Eyes National Cig Curb," to which Internet gossip Matt Drudge later posted a link with the headline: "Hillary Supports National Smoking Ban." In fact, when asked during the forum whether she would support the federal government "outlaw[ing] smoking in public places nationally," Clinton asserted: "I think the way that we're proceeding is probably the smarter way right now, which is locality, community, state." Indeed, the Post article noted in its final paragraph that, "[a]sked whether the feds should impose a nationwide ban, Clinton deferred to local governments."

During the forum, moderator and MSNBC host Chris Matthews asked: "Senator Clinton, would the day that America banned smoking in public places be a good day for America?" Clinton responded: "Well, personally, I think so -- and that's what a lot of local communities and states are starting to do, Chris." Matthews then asked: "[C]an you do that at the federal government, outlaw smoking in public places nationally and would you support something like that?" Clinton replied:

CLINTON: You know, Chris, I think the way that we're proceeding is probably the smarter way right now, which is locality, community, state, and the reason for that is that a lot of it depends upon local laws and regulations like zoning.

[...]

CLINTON: You know, the federal government has never gotten into that, but what I do think we can do is a much more aggressive outreach. That's why I favor the FDA being able to regulate advertising about nicotine and tobacco products, and we're going to push through, I hope, a bill to get that done. So, we'll have a lot of different forces moving all at the same time to really limit it, increase the excise tax, increase the cost of cigarettes. We'll eventually get there. We're lowering the rate of smoking now, and I think, over the next decade we'll really push it way down.

Full text of the New York Post article:

Hillary Clinton lavished praise on New York City's tough anti-smoking laws yesterday -- and said she supports smoking bans in public places across the country.

Asked at an Iowa forum on cancer whether banning smoking in public places would be good for America, Clinton replied, "Well, personally, I think so. And that's what a lot of local communities and states are starting to do."

Clinton noted that when New York's smoking ban was being considered, critics claimed, "Oh, that's the end of, you know, the bars and restaurants in New York City."

But she boasted, "We are now having more business than ever before, because a lot of people who stayed away from going out are now going out again, because they feel like they can enjoy their time outside."

Asked whether the feds should impose a nationwide ban, Clinton deferred to local governments.

From the 11 a.m. ET hour of the August 27 edition of MSNBC Live:

MATTHEWS: Senator Clinton, would the day that America banned smoking in public places be a good day for America?

CLINTON: Well, personally, I think so -- and that's what a lot of local communities and states are starting to do, Chris. You know, when some of the cities -- a big city like New York City said we're going to ban smoking in retail establishments because of the impact on the smoker, and we now know because of the impact of secondhand smoke, everybody said, "Oh, that's the end of, you know, the bars and restaurants in New York City." We are now having more business than ever before, because a lot of people who stayed away from going out are now going out again, because they feel like they can enjoy their time outside.

So, I think more and more cities and states are taking this on and I think that's all to the good, because -- what is it, Lance? A third of all cancers are caused by smoking, and it is indisputable that secondhand smoking now causes not only cancer but other diseases. I had a friend die of lung cancer, who never smoked a day in her life, and I bet every one of us would have an example like that.

So the more that we can limit smoking, especially because most people start smoking between 13 and 15 and 70 percent of smokers want to quit, so, in my healthcare plan, I would also help pay to have smokers quit by paying for the programs that work, because that is a lot cheaper than paying for end-stage lung cancer. And I think the more we can do to prevent it in the first place, the better off we'll be.

MATTHEWS: Well, could -- to follow up with Lance's first question -- could a big goal of your administration be a national ban for the reason that -- you're an attorney, of course, and you know in the '64 civil rights bill, the federal government assumed the right to say "no more discrimination on race in places of public accommodation, restaurants, hotels, etc," can you do that at the federal government, outlaw smoking in public places nationally and would you support something like that?

CLINTON: You know, Chris, I think the way that we're proceeding is probably the smarter way right now, which is locality, community, state, and the reason for that is that a lot of it depends upon local laws and regulations like zoning.

MATTHEWS: Right.

CLINTON: You know, the federal government has never gotten into that, but what I do think we can do is a much more aggressive outreach. That's why I favor the FDA being able to regulate advertising about nicotine and tobacco products, and we're going to push through, I hope, a bill to get that done. So, we'll have a lot of different forces moving all at the same time to really limit it, increase the excise tax, increase the cost of cigarettes. We'll eventually get there. We're lowering the rate of smoking now, and I think, over the next decade we'll really push it way down.

MATTHEWS: Thank you. Lance?

ARMSTRONG: My question was -- just with regards to the FDA -- so, you would be in favor of the FDA regulating tobacco.

CLINTON: Yes.

ARMSTRONG: A deadly drug.

CLINTON: It is. it is. It's an addictive, deadly substance, and we need to regulate it.

Network/Outlet
New York Post, The Drudge Report
Person
Matt Drudge
Stories/Interests
Propaganda/Noise Machine, Hillary Clinton, 2008 Elections
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