2010 - Senate Bill 1147

To Stop Internet and Mail Handling of Tobacco


Oh, what a friend crappy and insane State Legislatures have in this Federal Congress. While many states in the Union follow exceptionally poor fiscal policy and jack up state excise taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products, they find refuge in this Federal bill.

This bill serves to severely restrict or outlaw internet purchases and any postal or delivery retail handling of tobacco products.

A reading of the bills contents is very confusing - some parts seem concerned with just making sure high tax states get their tax, other parts outright say, “tobacco products as non-mailable items”. If the former, it is pretty much guaranteed that all internet and mail order will die - it’ll be too expensive and regulated to compete.

Basically, it allows all states to jack up tobacco taxes as much as they like, or suffer no consequences if they keep those taxes absurdly high, without fear that consumers might get a better deal online or out of state via mail order. While all other legal products sold retail in the US enjoy either tax-free or taxes-paid internet and mail ordering sales, tobacco products would become the first and only consumer product to be denied this market freedom.

Lost in this little ploy to aid states in their irresponsible fiscal policy is the fact that many disabled citizens rely on internet and mail order to be able to purchase the legal product of tobacco because they can’t any other way.

Of course, for the benefit of Republicans, the bill claims to try and stop terrorist funding by cheap cigarette sales. Again, lost in all this is the simpler solution of states to adopt REASONABLE excise taxes.

Below is a link to the Thomas Library of Congress skinny on the bill, including content, status and all votes pertaining to it. See it, then contact your Representatives (links for this on the main Federal page) to oppose it.

Thomas Register info on S-1147http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d111:s.1147: