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Virginia wants to raise the smoking age to 21

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As Virginia stays in the national spotlight for Governor Ralph Northam's 1984 medical school yearbook showing a racist photo, state lawmakers are still working to get bills through both the House and Senate before the end of Crossover Day, the deadline for each chamber of the General Assembly to pass bills for the other chamber to consider.


One of those bills is a measure to raise the age of purchasing and possessing tobacco products in the commonwealth of Virginia from 18 to 21.


HB 2748 passed the House of Delegates on a 67-31-1 vote Tuesday morning. Delegate Collins abstained.


The bill, which has the support of Republican House Speaker Kirk Cox, includes “nicotine vapor products, and alternative nicotine products, and the minimum age for persons such products can be sold to.”

It was proposed after the U.S. Surgeon General characterized teenage vaping as an epidemic.


“By raising the minimum age for purchase to 21, this will have a positive effect on our schools by lessening the chances of teenagers obtaining vaping products from friends and classmates who are already 18," said Cox.

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