Biden admin abruptly delays plan to ban menthol cigarettes amid widespread opposition

Biden admin abruptly delays plan to ban menthol cigarettes amid widespread opposition

  • April 26, 2024

Thomas Catenacci, Fox News

The Biden administration abruptly announced Friday that it will delay regulations banning menthol cigarettes amid widespread opposition to the proposal.

In a statement, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra said his agency would not move to finalize the regulations and pointed to opposition from civil rights activists. Since they were first proposed by the HHS’ Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the regulations have sparked a contentious debate between health advocates and civil liberties and business groups.

In addition, government watchdog group Protect the Public’s Trust (PPT) said the administration’s actions Friday confirmed its concerns it expressed last week when it sued HHS for withholding documents related to the regulations.

“This announcement appears to confirm the basis for our lawsuit a few weeks ago on the proposed menthol cigarette ban. Public health authorities following the polling rather than the science is not a good look. It’s also a major reason why trust in our public health officials is at an all-time low,” PPT Director Michael Chamberlain said. “This only heightens the need for transparency into what’s really driving decisions at the FDA.”

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