Krishnamoorthi is the chair of the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy and well known for being against vaping products and other tobacco harm reduction tools. He sent letters to renowned disposable vape producer Puff Bar, and Next Generation Labs, a synthetic nicotine producer.
Puff Bar sells disposable e-cigarettes online in a range of flavours including pink lemonade, tobacco, and strawberry, and colours (some of which light up when used). The devices contain 5%/50mg of salt nicotine.
Raja Krishnamoorthi’s letter based its arguments on data suggesting that vaping may increase one’s risk of contracting Covid-19 and suffering symptoms.
Since the US flavour ban went into effect in 2020, Juul sales have dropped significantly. However this decline was offset by an increase in the use of other brands and types of devices, such as disposable vapes, which were exempted from the ban. In 2020, Puff Bar became the third most used e-cigarette brand among teenagers. While Next Generation Labs, is the largest synthetic nicotine producer in the United States.
To this effect, the congressman demanded “all documents and communications referring or relating to the use of synthetic nicotine in Puff Bar products, including the decision to switch to synthetic nicotine, and all documents relating to the purchase of synthetic nicotine.” While from Next Generation Labs he wants “documents sufficient to show all companies to which you supply synthetic nicotine capable of being used in e-cigarettes and/or e-liquids” as well as “documents sufficient to show that your synthetic nicotine products are not tobacco-derived.”
Last year, Raja Krishnamoorthi sent a letter to former FDA Commissioner, Dr. Stephen Hahn, urging him to clear the market of all e-cigarettes for the duration of the coronavirus crisis. The letter based its arguments on data suggesting that vaping may increase one’s risk of contracting Covid-19 and suffering symptoms. “This is true in vapers as young as 13, which is particularly concerning, given that young people are increasingly driving the spread of COVID-19, threatening the health and safety of Americans of all ages,” read the letter.
The END ENDS Act
Earlier this year, the Congressman reintroduced the END ENDS Act which proposed a cap on nicotine concentrations in vapes switch the aim of combating teen vaping. Krishnamoorthi, a Democrat representing the 8th Congressional District of Illinois, said that he is continuing his work to end the youth vaping epidemic by advocating for legislation like the END ENDS Act (also known as the Ending Nicotine Dependence From Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems Act).
Subsequently in a recent letter to the Chicago Sun-Time, Krishnamoorthi once again exaggerating the threats posed by underage vaping, equating it to smoking and says “there’s simply no evidence” that e-cigarettes help smokers quit. Krishnamoorthi, fails to acknowledge the scientific peer reviewed studies indicating the effectivity of products as smoking cessation tools and their potential to reduce tobacco harm.
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