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The Congress on Thursday voted to increase the national minimum age for purchase of tobacco products from 18 to 21, and led the comprehensive new policy as part of a must-pass government funding package.
The Senate approved the policy in an eight-bill package in the run-up to the holiday break. The package, which is before the house of approval, winning is part of a series of measures to prevent an imminent government shutdown.
But to increase to fight in the midst of a bitter indictment, and other Capitol Hill drama, the bills included the most important political changes, including the minimum age for cigarettes and e-cigarettes.
Raising the tobacco age had fan support from unlikely sources: Altria, the nation’s largest tobacco manufacturer, and Juul Labs, known for its e-cigarette devices. Tobacco critics say, the companies’ support is calculated to strike the head off even tougher government action: a ban on all flavoured tobacco products, including fruit and dessert e-cigarette.
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“Altria and Juul support this, to argue that no further action is necessary,” said Matthew Myers of the campaign for tobacco-Free kids.
The measure, known as tobacco 21, as part of a $1.4 trillion spending package, the other notable political changes, such as an expensive repeal of the Obama-era taxes on high cost health plans, help for retired miners, and $1.4 billion for President Trump border wall, down from the $8 billion he’s asking for but the same was appropriated for it in the last year.
Democrats, secured $425 million euros for the member States to modernize their election systems, as well as increases in the US census budget, the Environmental Protection Agency, the programs for renewable energy and affordable housing.
The package passed with a 71-23 vote. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, in contrast, the expenditure of the measures, calling the bills “a tax dumpster fire.”
President trump is expected to sign the legislation reaches his Desk.
“The President is ready to sign it, and to keep open the government,” said a top White House Advisor, Kelly Anne Conway.
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An additional four-bill “minibus” is scheduled for a procedural vote later in the day. The passage of the spending bills comes a day before the Dec. 20 deadline, after which the government would be down to have hazards. The bills provide the government, the financing by the Rest of the fiscal year, which goes until Sept. 30, 2020.
Fox News’ Chad Pergram and The Associated Press contributed to this report.