Request for Smoking Ban Injunction Denied

A group of bar and restaurant owners seeking to halt the enforcement of the Iowa state smoking ban were denied on Monday when a judge ruled that they failed to show the ban has caused irreparable economic harm.

Polk County District Judge Douglas Staskal wrote in his ruling that the evidence the owners presented at a hearing last Friday was "anecdotal and unsupported by any kind of business records."

At the hearing, frustrated bar and restaurant owners railed against the state smoking ban. The owners questioned the ban's constitutionality, claimed it was negatively affecting business and argued that it forced owners to act as police officers for the state.

The owners are part of a larger group called Choose Freedom Iowa (, which filed a lawsuit to overturn the smoking ban on July 1, the same day the ban took effect.

The coalition had asked the judge to temporarily lift the smoking ban until the case for the lawsuit went to trial.

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