Scholars Argue Against Flavor Ban

Jeff Stier

The prohibition of the legal sale of flavored e-cigarettes to adults is unsupported by science, undermined by an analysis of the available data and lacks common sense, according to Jeff Stier, senior fellow at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, and Henri Miller, senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute.

Writing on Pundicity, the scholars insist the promised benefits of any policy should be weighed against the known risks and possibility of unintended consequences.

Last February, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that would ban the sale of flavored e-cigarettes to adults. The bill, sponsored by Representative Frank Pallone Jr., did not advance in the Senate but is likely to resurface in the next Congress, according to the Stier and Miller.

“Federal law already bans the sale of all e-cigarettes to anyone under 21, so the Pallone legislation would only change the legal status of the sale of flavored e-cigarettes to adults,” the authors wrote. “That would harm public health, because the data tell us that adult smokers can significantly reduce their health risks if they switch from smoking to vaping.”

Stier and Miller also refuted anti-flavor advocates’ concern about underage vaping. “Kids vape for lots of reasons, but the availability of flavors isn’t high among them,” they wrote.