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US Tries to Smoke Out Tobacco With Largest Tax Increase Ever

Yesterday anyone who bought a pack of smokes found their wallet a little lighter. The federal tax on cigarettes jumped 62 cents, the largest tobacco tax increase in history.

Smoking is proving to be a pricey habit, especially in places like New York City. You can't get your hands on a pack for less than $10.50. Some people spend hundreds a month on cigarettes. That's enough to cut back!

The new tax revenue will be used to expand children's health care. Some poorer smokers argue that the tax hike hits them disproportionately. When it comes to taxing cigarettes, do you think fairness should matter?


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Can I say WOW! Sorry for the triple post. My co-workers were talking to me...
I agree rdrac. The smog is far worse than 2nd hand cigarette smoke. I just can't believe that people are still willing to pay $7 for a pack of cigarettes, that have been proven to cause cancer. In my opinion, it's to each their own. Eveyone has their own vice...
rdrac496 rdrac496 8 years
OMG I'm so tired of ppl bitching about second hand smoke HA HA! Which I'm sure all of you ppl complaining about second hand smoke, Drive a car RIGHT? Well most of you do. You ppl wake-up everyday and breathe in just like all the rest of us do. But you don't walk up to ppl driving cars and say please turn off your car, I can't breathe. MMMMMMM Whats worse standing next to a smoker in a room, or standing in a room with a CAR running? I'm not the smartest person in the world, nor do I claim to beee!!! It's my choice to smoke, we're all dying. Look at LA.Ca. with the smog, Do they have the right to complain about smokers. Next time you second hand smoke Bitchers want to bitch, well turn your cars off or go to the factory puffing out who knows what kind of pollution into the air and tell them to stop! to make you feel better, Now stick your lips over the tailpipe of the NUMBER one polluter, the cars most of you (smoke complainers) drive, and breathe in DEEP!!!!! Think you don't pollute? turn on another light, that pollutes, by burning coal, write a letter (on paper) to a friend, that uses trees that cleans our air, Go to Target or Kmart and buy, buy anything. How do you think the product got there? By truck, that puffs out hydrocarbons, that's pollution. Oh yea the extra tax is going to help children's health, just like the lottery is helping mmmmmmm our schools, if you believe that I have some swamp land for sale!!!! I could go on and on here, if I haven't already, but I need to finish my cigarette, it's time for my breathing treatment, I have asthma, that I'm sure I got from breathing asbestosis, from years of doing brake jobs on cars, which been pumping brake dust into the air for years, from trillion of cars!!!!!!
yeokr yeokr 8 years
I'm sure if I let myself think about the tax on it's own, I could find things to object to, but I am happy that is an excise tax or whatever and is going to children's healthcare. Also, I am sure the an all out ban would be impossible since scientific ethics keep scientists from out and out proving the link between smoking and lung cancer so the tobacco industry keeps getting around anything that would make it ban-able if you will. Ultimately, I am choosing to see the good that can come from this.
LoveSarah LoveSarah 8 years
I don't understand how me smoking in my car, or in my home affects anyone else but myself (Actually, I smoke on my back patio so my cat doesn't get 2nd hand smoke) Anyway, the point is, how often are non smokers forced to stand around people smoking? Raising the taxes and the price of cigarettes wont make everyone quit. It's a drug, and an addiction. It's just going to make people more desperate and make them more poor. Granted, it's a choice they make, but this tax isn't because the government cares about out health, it's because the government wants money, and it's easy for non smokers to justify this tax increase because it doesn't effect them.
tarall10 tarall10 8 years
So I haven't read through all of the responses, but this is a very good thing. Smoking is a personal choice, but it effects every tax payer in this country through higher health care costs. It causes 80% of lung cancer cases, it increases the risk of heart disease and stroke and high blood pressure. I don't have them on hand, but there are statistics from states that demonstrate raising tobacco taxes lead to lower health care costs. They can't just ban cigarettes, it would never get through Congress. The tobacco lobby still has power, and it would so negatively impact tobacco producing states that the representatives (both Dem and Rep) from those states would never let something like that happen.
Show-Off Show-Off 8 years
Wow, the largest tobacco tax increase.Smoking shouldn't be in anyones lunch break plan or daily hobbies for a while ,but now they have increased the rate of tobacco we can breath in a little fresher air, Now im hoping and praying cancer will decrease from smoking and second hand smoking will decrease.I just thank god they have found a way to decrease people given their self and others cancer,lord knows how to make you stop doing something one way or another. m,w,f 9-950mapp.j.robin.
Nothing like paying for cancer...
Jessiebanana Jessiebanana 8 years
Well smokers could protest this and try and have the tax forced out...but they can't because they're smokers therefore forced to pay any price because of their addiction. They are victims of their addiction, not the government or popular opinion :shrug:. If they want to have the tax dropped let them take action and personal responsibility for it. If it were soda or fatty foods I bet your ass people wouldn't pay the price until the tax was removed or lowered. I don't even think alcoholics make up the majority of alcohol purchases...but don't quote me I could be wrong.
stephley stephley 8 years
A ban on cigarettes would cause a bigger uproar than the tax.
stephley stephley 8 years
Bastyle - yes drinking and driving can be harmful, but that's combining two things. Smoking can have health repercussions for people near the smoker, regardless of the smoker's behavior or actions. The average moderate drinker's behavior is not likely to change in a way that negatively impacts on people around them - and the act of their drinking won't affect others. Studies have found benefits and repercussions from moderate drinking - but not on the scale that even moderate smoking can cause.
kurniakasih kurniakasih 8 years
laurelm, clarabelle, Modus said it very well. I disagree with any tax hike involving just a certain group. And it is about the money. If the government really 'cares' about the health of these smokers and people around them, how about just ban cigarettes altogether, or pass the bill today on the senate, the one that requires a doctor's prescription to smoke a cigarette.
laurelm laurelm 8 years
It is singling out a population which is wrong. It is not about health, it is about making money. I hate smoking and being around it but do think it is an unfair tax hike.
bastylefilegirl bastylefilegirl 8 years
Moderately drinking alcohol and driving is more harmful than smoking a ciggy, and alcohol is much more releative to the individual than cigs are. And even if you only have one drink a day the effect of alcohol (even a moderate amount )on the brain is real and noted.
bastylefilegirl bastylefilegirl 8 years
It's about the motives to me. If it's all about wanting Americans to be healthy then I'm okay with them increasing the tax, but then they should also be lowering the price of the stop smoking patches/gum so that people have an "out". "Forcing" someones hand thru monetary measures isn't always the best way, since cigarettes are a drug and highly addictive I can see in increase in crime behind thing....i.e. people stealing them, people selling them illegally ( unregulated) etc etc. And I do agree where does the stop..then we should have a higher tax on foods with transfats or foods that are high in cholesterol etc etc
Captivate Captivate 8 years
Something's messed up about this tax, and some people can't see that because it's popular to demonize tobacco in American culture. There are better places that money could have come from. For instance, do we really need to spend millions (or was it billions?) of our money to make sure everyone can watch TV? Wasteful.
clarabelle98 clarabelle98 8 years
This is like saying that if you drive an SUV, YOUR cost of gas is 35 cents per gallon HIGHER than everyone elses because your vehicle puts more emissions into the air. Or, if you have a child and use disposable diapers your property taxes will go up because you make more waste than your neighbor without kids. Or, if you don't drive you will pay higher federal taxes because you walk on the country's sidewalks more and thus contribute more to them breaking down. All of those are ridiculous taxes, but if they're going to put yet ANOTHER one on cigarettes, then they need to tax everything else too. 1 month ago you could pick up a pack of cigarettes for 3.95. Now, they are 7.23. Has anything else in history every increased that much that fast?
stephley stephley 8 years
Drinking alcohol in moderation doesn't have the adverse impact on health that moderate smoking does.
telane telane 8 years
clarabelle98 and Modus Vivendi - That is EXACTLY how I feel about this, you worded it much better than I.
clarabelle98 clarabelle98 8 years
I want to see taxes like this on Alcohol. I want to see taxes like this on fast food. I want to see taxes like this on EVERYTHING that a few enjoy but isn't good for them. It's absolutely and utterly ridiculous that smokers are singled out.
Jessiebanana Jessiebanana 8 years
My Dad is actually trying to quit because of this :woohoo:. Yeah I just can't feel bad about this, my asthma is saying this is a win win situation for all.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 8 years
How is it not being " mr. personal responsibility" to say that instead of the nanny-state feds hiking up taxes, people are responsible on their own for whether they smoke. The government is taxing cigarettes because they're bad for you. What's next, a tax for when I clean my ears with q-tips? A tax on watching reality tv?
Roarman Roarman 8 years
dave, I just expected your response to be something along the lines of oh well, if smokers have a problem with the cost, they can just quit. They made the choice to smoke in the first place. I am actually on the fence here. I mean I do think cigarettes are a terrible habit and support anything that encourages people to quit, but raising the price doesn't do that, people are still addicted and like any other drug will pay whatever it costs to get it.
telane telane 8 years
Okay I made a typo - Second sentence should read, "I hate it because I feel like they are picking on people that have chosen a habit that is detrimental to their health."
telane telane 8 years
I have recently quit (for reasons unrelated to the economy and taxes) and I honestly think the tax hike on cigarettes is ridiculous. I hate that they are picking on people because I feel like they have chosen a habit that is detrimental to their health. Why don't they raise alcohol taxes? Alcohol is bad for your liver, among other things, and can also be addictive. Why not slap a tax on a Big Mac or a Whopper?
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