U.S. President Donald Trump appears receptive to arguments from vapor advocates that a blanket ban of e-liquid flavors could provoke a political backlash from voters, according to an article in The New York Times.
After announcing bold action in September, the president has resisted moving forward, saying he wants to further study the issue.
An announcement on sweeping vapor product restrictions, scheduled for Nov. 5, was reportedly canceled following warnings from presidential advisers about political repercussions.
On Nov. 11, Trump tweeted that he would be meeting with representatives of the vapor industry, together with medical professionals and individual state representatives, “to come up with an acceptable solution to the vaping and e-cigarette dilemma.”
The president has been subjected to an intense lobbying campaign waged by tobacco and vapor companies along with conservative organizations, like Americans for Tax Reform, which are opposed to regulatory limits that would affect retailers, small businesses and adult vapers.
Some have promoted enforcing sales restrictions to protect minors or raising the national age to 21 for sales of all tobacco products.
The New York Times article compared the trajectory of the flavor ban—from a bold pronouncement of swift action to a fizzle after the political realities of taking such an action emerge—to Trump’s stance on gun legislation.
After mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, Trump said he wanted to pass “very meaningful background checks.” But warnings from gun rights advocates and Republican lawmakers about the political fallout ensured that ultimately no action was taken.