Smoking Ban Show Down In Fargo

JT_Cigarro_front_page

The owner of a cigar club in Fargo thinks he’s found a loophole in the anti-smoking law. He wants to allow his customers to smoke in a members-only section of his bar which on he works in, accessible only by members who pay a fee and get access through an electric key.

But according to the anti-smoking gestapo, he’s still breaking the law and they’re pressing charges.

The director of Fargo Cass Public Health said she plans to file a complaint with Cass County prosecutors against the owner of JT Cigarro, who has been allowing people to continue smoking in a “members only” room through what he has called a “loophole” in the law.

Ruth Bachmeier said she has attempted for weeks to reach out to bar owner Dana Coulter to get him in compliance with the law, but she is hitting a wall.

“I don’t anticipate that by our education we’re going to change the mindset,” Bachmeier said. “He believes that he’s found a loophole, and no amount of education is going to change how he is interpreting the law.”

Yes. Clearly Mr. Coulter needs to be re-educated.

This really shows just what a travesty this law is. North Dakotans who want to smoke can’t go to a place where the only people allowed are people who want to smoke and enjoy tobacco. There’s no second hand smoke issue for other customers or employees, but still they’re not allowed to make that choice.

Which, again, shows that the anti-tobacco crusade isn’t so much about public health as it is about control. It’s about eradicating tobacco from society entirely, and that’s not something which should happen in a free society.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • sbark

    —going to be alot of emotional left wingers viewing this as a full blown crisis.

    Notice how Obama can fully disregard a Fed judges orders on ObamaCare, on gulf oil shutdown, Notice how the Left can fully disregard a state vote of the people–Calf prop 8, How Chrysler bond holders can be wiped out………without a peep

    ….but wow….have 1 private citizen, on private property, meet the laws specifications and yet find away to serve his customers ……….and wow: no backing down.—this is a state level Constitutional crisis to them…..

  • sbark

    Appears, if there are these kind of loopholes in the way this law was written—–it was a “poorly written law” much along the lines of what was claimed about Measure 2

    Seems as if th emotionally weak didnt mind it in this case……

    and what is more “local” than 1 person on his own private property…..which I presume has property taxes paid in full…….

    • headward

      Has there been any word from the KIL ND people about this measure?

      • sbark

        KIL was just a cute name for a group with the same agenda as the UN Agenda 21 project…..

      • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

        I think you’re assuming that Keep It Local ND was actually in favor of, you know, keeping it local.

  • zipity

    Perhaps it is time zat we open ze re-education camps for them, jah…..?

    Zen perhaps zey vill learn zat ve mean business…

  • matthew_bosch

    You’ll have to excuse me, M(r)s. Bachmeier. We small business owners aren’t enlightened with your progressive mindset. That’s why we’re small business owners and you are a “community activist.”

  • Matthew Hawkins

    Good luck to Mr. Coulter

  • headward

    “Because the ban is state law, the state’s attorney’s office is responsible with pressing charges after receiving such a complaint, said Assistant City Attorney Jason Loos, who has been providing legal advice to public health officials. ”

    “Even though the smoking room is restricted to members, Loos believes Coulter is not in compliance because the “public” still has access to that room.”

    If a non-member enters a known area where they do not have access to they would be trespassing. I guess by me entering a machine shop without proper protection(eye glasses, steel toe boots, helmet, ear plugs, etc), I could sue them for affecting my health even though there is signage that states that it’s for employees or members only.

    The forum article states right off the bat that the owner is trying to “skirt the statewide smoking ban.” I call it following the law as it is written. I won’t be joining that members club as I don’t like smoke but I hope all the success on that business and all those that enjoy it.

  • Thresherman

    If Bachmeier is successful in shuting Coulter down, she will have not only cost him a portion of his livelihood and impair his ability to pay his creditors, but will have impacted the revenue due the city and state because of the taxes he would have otherwise collected. Thus I think that if Coulter has to suffer because of Bachmeier, Bachmeir should be made to suffer as well and have the lost revenues taken from her budget and salary.

  • schreib

    I think that this legislative session should write clarrification legislation to permit such private clubs. Granted that I still believe that private property owners should be able to permit smoking in their business, but since the anti smoking gestapo has had its way, new law must be proposed and clarrified to protect the rights of smokers against those who want prohibition—and we know how that turned out.

    • camsaure

      It should be declared unconstitutional. Initiated measures should get no special privledges to infringe on constitutional rights.

      • spud

        Well it’s just the law of the state. Voters wanted it and got it. You can whine about it all you want but the truth is your swimming way out in the ocean without a life jacket which this owner is soon to find out. Libs and conservatives like to call groups and organizations by cute little names. But in the end there is a winning hand and a losing hand. So sad for you this time and there is nothing else for you to do but go outside and talk to those who choose to light them up. Dress warm temps will be falling this week.

        • camsaure

          Pud, it may have been voted on but that don’t make it constitutional. Oh, by the way I don’t smoke, it is jhust that I care about the constitutional rights of everyone, unlike people of your ilk.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            Spud doesn’t seem to have any way to support his positions other than to say it won on the ballot.

            Voters have made plenty of mistakes. That doesn’t make it right.

          • dakotacyr

            Yes, they did, you just don’t like the outcome.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            He’s not saying the people didn’t vote on it. He’s saying the vote doesn’t necessarily mean the law is constitutional.

          • Guest

            Not liking doesn’t mean it’s unconstitutional. Unless a court were to fight smoking fell within the gambit of substantive due process along with marrying, voting, religion, etc., there’s not much of a legal argument it is unconstitutional.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            Well then, it’s a good thing I didn’t say that not liking a law means it’s unconstitutional. What I said was that a measure approved by the voters doesn’t automatically mean it is constitutional. Such measures can be, and often are, found to be illegal by the courts.

            Whether or not this specific law is unconstitutional I’ll reserve judgment on as I haven’t spent any time studying that specific question.

          • Guest

            Unless it infringes on one of the specifically identified substantive due process rights and the government does not have a compelling reason for the law, it almost certainly does mean the law is constitutional. Smoking has never even been close to be in penumbra of marriage, procreation, education. Please Rob, you’re embarrassing yourself.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            I actually suspect that you’re right, and the fact that I never claimed otherwise makes me wonder why you’re attacking me on this basis.

            Other than the fact that you’re just a not-very-inspired troll.

            There is an argument to be made about property rights, though. I’ve never agreed with defining as a “public space” private property that the property owner merely invites the public on to.

            Property owners are allowed to set terms for entry (reserving the right to refuse service, for instance, or not serving people without shoes or shirt or banishing a shoplifter). Why can’t property owners say that people who don’t want to be around smoking aren’t welcome?

            It is, after all, their property no? What right do you have to go on someone else’s property?

            Shouldn’t we want a solution which preserves everyone’s right to choose? A property owner can choose to allow smoking, and a non-smoker can choose not to go there, no?

          • camsaure

            in your world private property means nothing, I guess.

          • Dakotacyr

            Oh, it will be found constitutional, if there is a challenge. If people really thought it was unconstitutional, it would have been challenged already and you wouldn’t have to look for a “loophole” in order to challenge it. Tobacco companies would have been all over it if that were the case.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            You could be right. Judges have been known to be lax in their willingness to protect property rights.

          • camsaure

            I can see why someone as morally bankrupt as yourself would be gleefull about peoples constitutional private property rights being trampled on. Remember maybe someday your rights may be trampled as well.(being the socialist/marxist that you are)

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          I don’t think many of the voters grasped the realities of this law.

    • Rick Olson

      See my entry above. The Legislature is barred from amending or repealing a citizen-initiated measure without a two-thirds vote of the House and the Senate for a period of seven years from the date said measure was approved by the people of North Dakota, and it hit the law books 30 days later. However, there is nothing to forbid another group from mounting yet another initiated measure on the subject. They could seek to amend the law to allow exceptions for tobacco shops. However, the earliest that could be voted on would be during the 2014 election cycle. It could be too little, too late for Mr. Coulter.

  • pete

    Oh, Oh, Oh!! Smoking is B.A.D. You can’t light em up here, there, anywhere.

    Simple solution – ban sale of tobacco … except we can not ban tobacco because we would loose tax revenue.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      That hypocrisy in government is fascinating.

      We spend millions fighting to all but outlaw a product that, in turn, pours millions in tax revenues into government coffers.

      It’s the sort of cognitive dissonance that can only be brought to you by…government.

    • dlao

      we tried that in the 2003 legislative session. The American Lung Assoc. and the American Heart Assoc. showed up and testified against the bill to outlaw the sale of tobbacco. I guess they didn’t find it to be that big a deal.

      • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

        Well they don’t want to lose the revenues!

  • DWHoover

    I haven’t been able to get a clear cut answer on this question. As the law is written, I cannot have a cigarette or even an e-cigarette in any public places. If I go to a public place with a wad of chewing tobacco in my lip, am I breaking the law? I don’t chew, but I am just curious. It would seem that the law was an anti-tobacco measure, however, an e-cigarette contains no tobacco. So it must be an anti-nicotine measure. However, if a person is on “the patch”, they are getting a small does of nicotine transdermally into their skin. So is that, too, breaking the law?

    If someone comes into my business and has a dip in, can I refuse service to them? If I am able to, on what grounds? If I can refuse service because it is “gross”, by that logic I can refuse service to someone because they smell bad. That, too, is “gross”.

    My point being, this is a stupid law. And kudos to the business owner who is sticking up for his business.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      I agree, kudos to this guy for defending his business.

    • Rick Olson

      Nope. You are free to chew away in public. Chewing tobacco does not give off the same toxins into the air as burning tobacco does. The law only bans the usage of tobacco products that are lit (cigars, cigarettes, pipes, etc.) and e-cigs in any indoor workplace/public place.

      • DWHoover

        But the only second hand effect of e-cigs is water. E-cigs are not lit. Other than their appearance, they are no different than “the patch”.

        • Rick Olson

          I understand that. However, in most of the states which have banned tobacco smoking in indoor public workplaces; they’ve also banned e-cigs. Minnesota and South Dakota have included e-cigs in those statewide bans. I’m not sure what the reasoning behind that is.

          • DWHoover

            Which brings me back to the original question I asked. What is the point of this law. It attacks things that shouldn’t be, and doesn’t attack things that should. If you can look me in the eye and tell me with a straight face that chewing is safer than an e-cigarette, then I will admit you play a great game of poker.

          • Rick Olson

            There are known health risks to a person who chews tobacco as well. Mouth cancers, dental issues including gum disease; the carcinogens in the tobacco go to work on the mouth, throat, etc. There are warning labels on cans of snuff, packages of chewing tobacco, etc. which warn “the usage of this product is NOT a safe alternative to smoking.” Therefore, chewing tobacco is not a safer alternative than an e-cigarette. Again, I’m not sure why the e-cigs were banned by this initiative. I thought I heard somewhere that the argument centered around the chemicals that are contained in the cartridge of the e-cig that delivers the nicotine, etc. in the water vapor that is produced.

          • DWHoover

            I whole-heartedly agree with you. And I will even solidify your argument by adding that chewing is just plain gross. This whole thing does not make a lick of sense to me.

          • Lianne

            There was no reasoning behind the law or the ban.

  • spud

    Went to a Xmas gathering after meal last weekend. The bars never smelled better and this is just a little speed bump in the road. Rob can bring up any issue he wants and to his credit this is in the news cycle. The facts are the facts and this issue is in a matter of a little time so over and done with.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Politics are cyclical, spud. You should try developing an argument on merits for once.

      • spud

        Smoking is bad for people and what is like to get your butt whipped at the polls all the time. Hey in Minnesota you didn’t even get a chance to vote on it. By the way Rob your invite to Romney inauguration is not coming in the mail. You should remember that fact along with the other measures you supported that went down in flames. I for one am tired of paying the health care premiums for a bunch of dumbasses who don’t give a hoot about anyone’s health including there own. A big chunk of insurance premiums is because people don’t take care of themselves. I had a chance to make a statement on this with my vote and my words. They will be the ones going outside to light up from now on not me. This is not a cyclical issue this issue is dead period. It is not coming back. Were finally with the times as smoking is not an indoor public event in most of America anymore.

        • LibertyLover

          The only dumb-ass is someone like yourself that is so clueless about rights of others and choices made. To make the argument about “public health” is just preposterous. You’re as big an idiot on the smoking measure as you were about Measure 2. But you don’t care, it’s your dumb-ass to tell everyone else how to live and how much they have to pay to continue to rent from the government. Why are you on this blog? You’re obviously not a supporter of people doing there own thing but of continued government intervention and the nanny state. How much am I paying to so you can get a new tractor every year? How about you right me a check for what i do? And don’t go off and give me “we feed the world” BS as that’s a complete load of crap.

          • LibertyLover

            write me a check

          • spud

            I have never supported these checks to farmers. To me they are nothing more than welfare checks just as the same as the oil companies get from federal govt. At prices where they have been at for quite some time and the abuse that these govt programs have caused they should have been done away with a long time ago.

          • MRCASH

            a product of the u.s. education system

          • spud

            Enjoy the smoke-free atmosphere in the bars in our state. Actually we all get to courtesy of the citizens of the great state of North Dakota. Sorry you guys didn’t get the results you wanted.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            “Enjoy the smoke-free atmosphere in the bars in our state.”

            Unless you like tobacco. Then your rights and opinions don’t matter.

          • spud

            Since 9-11 alot of individual rights have gone by the wayside. Lots of things infringe on your rights in North Dakota. If you borrow money to farm your required to carry crop insurance. Buy a house in a flood plain until its paid off yep you are required to carry flood insurance. We have to have proof of auto insurance. Yes alot of things we have to do that are required by other groups against our individual rights. I will quit with the smug attitude as I have gone way further than I intended to with it and that is entirely on me.

          • Bat One

            Your “smug” attitude is unwarranted. Not only do the “examples” you cite have nothing to do with 9-11… or North Dakota for that matter… but they really aren’t examples of infringement on anyone’s rights. Unless. like so many other liberals you believe that you are entitled to the property of someone else simply because you want or need it.

            Both crop insurance and flood insurance, like many other forms of insurance policies, protect the collateral of the lender. If you don’t wish to pay the premiums, don’t borrow the money. Pay cash instead. As for auto insurance, there is no “right” to drive on public highways. Its a privilege, and the state requirement that you protect yourself and other drivers by carrying insurance isn’t an unreasonable requirement. Its those who drive with no insurance that are infringing on the rights of others.

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          That’s certainly the argument fools like you fall for. We’re forced to collectivize, and the the collectivization is used as the leverage to remove our rights.

          You make am argument for tying health care costs to the individual, not removing the ability if the individual to make their own choices.

          • spud

            And fools like you continue to get there butts handed to them in elections. Keep telling the people what they want or you want and you will continue to see the results that get sowed. I may get carried away with my anti-smoking rants but we all have seen the terrible results they have brought to people. Rob you are always going to win the war on your blog but the reality is on every issue brought to the populace you have gotten spanked. Most people didn’t like the patriot act either but it keeps getting renewed. This country has changed as has this state. People are entitled to there viewpoints and the argument you keep making about one’s constitutional rights or if it is constitutional will be viewed by the courts as “fools gold”. But your winning the argument on your blog but then again are you really winning? I know I am.

          • MRCASH

            there he goes again

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            Your right. Sadly, appreciation for individual liberty has declined to a nauseating degree in our society.

            Buy I’ll keep fighting the good fight all the same.

        • camsaure

          Pud, Does that include gays with aids? Why in the hell should we be forced to pay for anyones health care in the first place? First you libs want everyone to pay for everyone else, then you want to pick and choose who, even though everyone is forced to pay.

    • zipity

      We’ll just have to wait and see how many of these small town bar/grills survive over the next 18 to 24 months. You can be sure the NannyState Busybodys will be busily whitewashing (if not outright lying about) any data that shows they are hurting badly…. I’m sure you are one of those who will now be patronizing the bar regularly now that the EVIL SMOKERS are banned, or is this a once a year event for you?

      • spud

        How many have died on Minnesota border up in Hallock, Stephen, keep going down that road answer none. Spread some more false info.

    • RCND

      Do you have any convictions on anything whatsoever that you are actually willing to stand up for?

      • spud

        My family has land in the Bakken formation getting drilled on I have always supported drilling on government land though I don’t actually like the govt. owning land. In this state we have the constitutional right to initiate measures for the welfare of the many. It is not my fault your brand is getting there butts kicked at the polls. The 67% who voted smoking out don’t care one iota except that we can now go to bars which I have always done and can breathe in them and next day have stench not be all over me from chain smokers and that is what they are when they drink. Your problem is you can’t convince enough people to vote your way.

        • RCND

          So you don’t. Thanks for the answer.

    • MRCASH

      i’m beginning to think that spud has the I.Q. of a gerbil !

  • geoff

    Why can’t we ban liberal democrats from public buildings as I have been daignosed with an acute anti democrat social disorder. Every time I meet one my blood pressure sky rockets and am near cardiac arrest. I think there must be more people like me in the public with the same disorder. Maybe it’s time to get a petition going to remove them from all public buildings.

    • nimrod

      I need to find out who diagnosed you, because I think I may have it as well.

      • geoff

        Dr. Phil

    • VocalYokel

      I wonder if that explains my overwhelming urge to hit bunny-huggers with a hardcover copy of ‘Silent Spring’…

  • fredlave

    Yes, send him and everyone who doesn’t sign on to the political correctness agenda to “reeducation” camps. They worked very well in Vietnam and China.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      The way she worded that was downright Orwellian wasn’t it?

  • Waski_the_Squirrel

    It’s a stupid law, but the voters of North Dakota made it a law. It is now the law of the land. Change the law, but don’t just ignore laws you don’t like.

    I’m just glad I wasn’t a bar owner in a small town who offered a smoke-free alternative. My competitive advantage would have been destroyed by this law. I recall something like this happening in the town of Napoleon about a year ago: in that case it was a city ordinance. One bar wanted to be smoke free and the other did not. The one that wanted to be smoke free was too scared to do so unless the other was forced to be smoke free as well. Charming.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      I don’t think it’s fair to say he’s ignoring the law. I think he’s following it to the letter as he interprets it.

      This is why we have courts.

    • LibertyLover

      All laws repugnant to the constitution are null and void: Marbury vs. Madison.

      An unconstitutional act is not law, it confirms no rights, it imposes no duties; affords no protection, it create no office, it is in legal contemplation, as inoperative as though it had never been passed: Norton vs. Shelby County.

      Dana’s right – as usual – the “state” is wrong.

  • RCND

    Every bad law needs a good legal challenge. Lets do this…

  • sbark

    … not only is the capacity for disobedience the condition for freedom; freedom is also the condition for disobedience.—-Eric Fromm 1963

    Now contrast that to those who tend to just obey……

    As long as I am obedient to the power of the State, the Church, or public opinion, I feel safe and protected. In fact, it makes little difference what power it is that I am obedient to. It is always an institution, or men, who use force in one form or another and who fraudulently claim omniscience and omnipotence. My obedience makes me part of the power I worship, and hence I feel strong. I can make no error, since it decides for me; I cannot be alone, because it watches over me; I cannot commit a sin, because it does not let me do so, and even if I do sin, the punishment is only the way of returning to the almighty power.—-Eric Fromm 1963

  • spud

    Elections have consequences and you can talk about property right being violated and constitutional rights being violated but this is what the people of our state voted for no matter what argument Rob drums up. This is what I wanted and sorry but we are all going to have to abide by it if you want to drink in bars. If you want to smoke in your car or your home I support you to the hilt but I won’t let anyone smoke in my car or trucks or tractors. We won this issue at the ballot box it was the best resort we had to go about getting done. I know you all feel bad about that but the truth is everyone of you knew that this measure would pass and by big margin. I also doubt this owner in this establishment will be anymore successful than any of you will to ever overturn it.

    • LibertyLover

      Thanks Adolf…

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      So it’s OK to remove people’s rights…as long as people vote for it.

      So you’re arguing that we could reinstate slavery with a vote?

      Please, you’re embarrassing yourself.

      • Guest

        Number of constitutional amendments prohibiting slavery: 1
        Number of constitutional amendments protecting the right to smoke in public places: 0

        Please Rob, you’re embarrassing yourself.

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          Ha, boy, you really don’t read for comprehension do you?

          I wasn’t addressing the smoking topic specifically so much as Spud’s belief that whatever the voters approve is right.

          Clearly that’s not right, as once upon a time this Republic once denied the vote to women and allowed the enslavement of blacks.

          Nobody said smoking was constitutionally protected.

    • MRCASH

      hey spud,lets legislate that we can all move into your house rent free,we’ll then see if you think the same way about that

  • fred Jones

    It is really about destroying “white Unity”

  • Lianne

    I am a terrible judge of distance, esp outside when I am indoors on my computer. But, is the distance from store front to curb 20 feet in downtown districts. If not, a smoker would have to be in the street smoking to comply with this law, or did they change the 20′ portion of the bill? I realize this doesn’t directly pertain to this business, but is just anoher example of the short-sided thinking that went into this bill.

  • LibertyFargo

    “I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.” – Thomas Jefferson

  • Rick Olson

    Dana Coulter is toast. Legally speaking that is. There’s no judge in his or her right mind that’s going to rule against a citizen-initiated measure. That’s the first thing that an officeholder learns in Politics 101. Stay as far away from a sensitive and divisive issue as you possibly can. Judges are elected officeholders after all. All judges are at some point elected in North Dakota, and voters do have long memories.

    In North Dakota, the Legislature may weigh in on a citizen-initiated measure; and enact legislation that would either amend or repeal the law changes that were put in place via the initiative.

    In order for the Legislature to amend or repeal state law that results from an initiated measure for seven years from the date of its approval by the people of North Dakota and its enactment into law thirty days later, it must do so with a two-thirds majority vote of each house of the Legislature.

    This means the Legislature is powerless, for a seven year period following the adoption and enactment into law of this initiated measure, to insert exceptions for tobacco shops like J.T. Cigarro into the indoor smoking ban law if it is unable to muster a two-thirds majority vote in the House and the Senate.

    However, there is nothing to prevent another group from bringing forward another initiated measure on the subject. This means North Dakotans could be voting on this as early as the 2014 election cyle.

    Unfortunately, it will probably be too late for Mr. Coulter and J.T. Cigarro. Unfortunately, it is what it is. Coulter’s going to either have to live with it or go out of business.

    • JW-American

      DJ (David) Colter is the Ins. guy… Dana Coulter is the fellow in the fight of his life against the lemmings led by special interests. Just to keep everyone straight.

      • Rick Olson

        You’re right. I corrected my entry accordingly. I apologize for the brain fart on my part.

    • JW-American

      I disagree, a judge may look at the constitutionalism of a poorly thought out law, and strike parts, or all of it. Then take pride in the fact that he did his job as elected to do so.

      Do you really think many voters in this state have a clue on which judge votes for what in this state? Most judges run unopposed Its a sorry state of affairs but the unedjukated get to vote, and they couldn’t remember anything past who won dancing w/ da starz.

      • Rick Olson

        Trust me, on a subject like this, voters do have long memories. Especially when the BreatheND.com folks have a field day with the judge in question; and essentially tar and feather him/her for their decision and vowing to run a candidate against said judge when he or she comes up for re-election.

  • Rick Olson

    I wanted to issue a clarification/correction to earlier statements that I made. I was mistaken that the Legislature is completely forbidden from amending or repealing state law which emerges from a citizen initiated measure for a period of seven years from the date of its adoption and enactment into law.

    I looked into this further and the Legislature can amend or repeal a citizen-initiated measure prior to the expiration of the above seven-year period. The Legislature can only do so if they are able to garner a two-thirds majority vote in favor in both the House and the Senate.

    However, I really don’t see the Legislature getting into this fray. Since a good majority of their constituents voted for the complete statewide indoor smoking ban in the Nov. 6th election; I doubt many lawmakers would have an appetite to overturn that vote.

    They do have to face their constituents back home … especially come re-election time.

  • awfulorv

    Nineteen years ago, after smoking a pack a day for 35 years, I quit cold turkey. I had earlier quit for a period of three years, but backslid. It was difficult during those first months, until my system totally rid itself of the desire. Today, I know that I would never place a cigarette between my lips again, and think those who do look foolish doing so. At the risk of taunting the cancer Gods, and bringing retribution upon me, I most happily relate that I recently had a chest x-ray and the doctor found no problems whatsoever, with my lungs. For those of you who are contemplating quitting for the new year I, wholeheartedly, encourage you to do. Believe me the cigarette companies are rich enough, they don’t need your daily contribution. And when you begin your non-smoking efforts remember this little tidbit, which I found helpful. As you begin quitting, you will not crave a smoke every second of your waking hours. You will, instead, get the urge, perhaps, three-four times per hour, and then only for a few seconds, till the next craving occurs. If you can cruise through these urges, think of something else during those seconds, you will be winning your battle. And remember, as I did and you should also, we are adults who has overcome many obstacles during our lives, don’t let your loved ones, or your mirror, see you sniveling, unable to quit this stupid, filthy, unhealthy, costly, addiction. Best wishes in your endeavor. I know this missive appears preachy but if these words can be of help to, even, a few of you it will have been worth the disdain.

  • Rick Olson

    I don’t foresee the Legislature revisiting this subject with a ten foot pole. Although with a two thirds vote of both houses of the Legislature and the governor’s signature; this initiated measure can be amended or repealed. However, I don’t think many lawmakers have the stomach to overturn a vote of the people.

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