Clinton Pushes For Tobacco Settlement
By Eileen O'Connor/CNN
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Feb. 13) - President Bill Clinton urged quick congressional approval of a national tobacco settlement in a speech in Philadelphia Friday. (544K wav sound)
Speaking to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the president cited new econometric studies by the U.S. Treasury that show increasing prices will discourage teen-age smoking.
"The analysis projects that the price increases and other measures we have proposed will cut teen smoking by almost half over the next five years," the president said. (480K wav sound)
The president attempted to bring home the human impact of the study's numbers, saying, "By the year 2003 we can stop almost three million young people from smoking and save almost one million lives as a result. We ought to save those lives, and you should demand that we save those lives."
Clinton has proposed a $1.50 increase in the price of a pack of cigarettes, phased in over a five-year period.
The administration would use those revenues for funding various proposals to improve education and health care for children. Some members of Congress are pushing for increasing prices independent of a national tobacco settlement. The president is pushing for a comprehensive settlement, not a piecemeal approach.
Clinton also promoted his proposal to increase funding for scientific research and development, including a special 21st Century Fund, focusing on new technologies designed to solve problems facing citizens into the next century.