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Unpublished Paper
The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act: Legislation Passed by Congress or the Tobacco Companies?
ExpressO (2011)
  • Sakineh A Majd
Abstract
The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (“the Act”) was passed by the 111th Congress in June 2009. Granting the FDA substantial authority to regulate tobacco products and how they are marketed, the Act has the power to define the future of the tobacco industry in America, and its passage did not go uncontested. Philip Morris was in support, while competing tobacco firms Reynolds and Lorillard were opposed. With the Act’s controversial passage came accusations that the senators of the 111th Congress voted according to the agendas of the tobacco firms that they were beholden to. I argue that those accusations are largely correct. A more complicated question surrounds the issue of what makes a senator beholden to one tobacco firm over another. After examining the sources of campaign contributions to senators of the 111th Congress during the year and a half leading up to the Act’s passage, I found that senators who received above average contributions were more likely to be beholden to the tobacco firm from which they received the highest percentage contributions. And accordingly, they were more likely to vote according to the agendas of those firms. Although senatorial beholdenness is a complicated subject, with a plethora of factors that influence it, money appears to be the strongest motivating factor.
Disciplines
Publication Date
May 1, 2011
Citation Information
Sakineh A Majd. "The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act: Legislation Passed by Congress or the Tobacco Companies?" ExpressO (2011)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/sakineh_majd/1/