Many of the machine-made cigars sold in gas stations and convenience stores around the country could soon be a thing of the past. A new bill introduced in the Senate last week, aimed primarily at restricting flavored e-cigarettes, would also ban the sale of flavored cigars.
The Stopping Appealing Flavors in E-Cigarettes for Kids (SAFE Kids) Act was introduced by Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) last Wednesday as part of an effort to address a sharp increase in the number of American children using e-cigarettes. Should the bill become law, it would also ban the use of flavor additives in cigars within one year.
A press release from the office of Sen. Durbin cites a statistic that shows “high school students smoke cigars at higher rates than cigarettes.” The senator believes cigar use is being driven in part by “kid-friendly” flavors.
These statistics, however, do not apply to premium or handmade cigars. Much to the contrary, research has found that only 2.3 percent of children between the ages of 12 and 17 had ever smoked a traditional cigar.