Maine to Raise Smoking Age to 21

Filed in News & Politics by on August 7, 2017 1 Comment

More states are joining the trend of increasing the smoking age. This also applies to the sale of vapes, ecigs and other items like hookahs. The next in line, Maine.

According to a The New York Times report, “Maine will become the fourth state to raise the smoking age to 21 and will adopt stricter regulations on the sale of electronic cigarettes after lawmakers on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to override the governor’s veto.”

The reason Gov. Paul R. LePage, a Republican, is against the age increase? As shared on pressherald.com, While discussing topics on his weekly call-in appearance on a Bangor-based talk radio show, WVOM, LePage said he opposes laws that amount to “social engineering.”

It’s an age old debate, keeping certain freedoms free and keeping the government out of daily life for adults, able to make their own decisions. But the question here, for the governor of Maine, is what that number is.

LePage said he vetoed the bill to increase the legal age to buy cigarettes or other tobacco products, including vaping equipment, because 18-year-olds are deemed mature enough to join the military.

I’m not going to strap a gun to their shoulder and go fight a war if they can’t go buy cigarettes,” LePage said. “I’ll tell you, this is just sinful, it is absolutely sinful, and I believe that at 18 they are mature enough to make a decision and I’m tired of living in a society where we social engineer our lives.

The counter-argument explained the availability of nicotine products to people younger than should be using them. Many people are concerned with the availability to people younger than 18, by age related association.

Only the fifth state to attempt raising the legal age to 21, Maine is doing so to help prevent younger people from ever taking up smoking as a habit. California and Hawaii and New Jersey have passed regulations, and Oregon recently enacted a similar law. New Jersey’s law will be effective as of November 1.

This trend seems to be picking up steam. Which state is next?

What do you think about states raising the age to 21?

Comments (1)

  1. Not sure how I feel about this. On one hand, raising the age is a good thing as it helps protect our young from tobacco. On the other hand, you can send an 18-year-old to fight a war but that same 18-year-old can’t buy a pack of smokes in the state of Maine? Seems a little ridiculous to me. Tough call though. Hard to decide where I stand on this one.

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