Senate toughens tobacco ad rules in new bill

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In a major blow to ad groups and marketers, negotiators for the Senate Commerce Committee wrote precedent-setting curbs on tobacco ads into their compromise package due to be unveiled March 30. The bill essentially seeks to put into law the voluntary curbs reached in an earlier agreement with state attorneys general. However, late Friday, work was still continuing to convince tobacco marketers to accept a voluntary ad-curb deal. The proposed bill--coming after senators were unable to persuade tobacco marketers to accept the voluntary ad curbs with a higher price tag than the attorneys general deal--appears to portend a major constitutional battle.

Copyright March 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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