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« Anna Soubry replaced by Jane Ellison as public health minister | Main | James Reilly: the face of Big Government wants war with Big Tobacco »

Questions that the Conservatives, and Jeremy Hunt, need to answer

Big day tomorrow for everyone who has been campaigning against the EU's revised Tobacco Products Directive.

I'll have more information about Forest's No Thank EU campaign in the morning.

In the meantime my colleague Brian Monteith, who edits Forest's Free Society website, has written an excellent article for Conservative Home.

Here's a taste:

Labour MEP Linda MacAvan has made available the letter from Jeremy Hunt that has been sent to all Conservative MEPs. In it he clearly states the UK government’s (and therefore presumably the Prime Minister’s) support of the EU plans. Yes really. In his letter he could not be clearer:

'Ahead of the plenary vote on the proposal for a revised Tobacco Products Directive on 8 October, I wanted to set out how important I think this legislation is to improve public health and protect young people from the harms of tobacco.'


'The UK Government considers the revised Tobacco Products Directive to be crucial to more effective tobacco control across the EU.'

Quite how this fits with the Conservative party’s public stance on Europe is anybody’s guess. It will be interesting to see Conservative MEPs explain to voters on the doorsteps across the next few months how the Conservative party’s decision to hand over public health policy matters to the EU sits with its leader’s commitment to curtail the powers of Europe.

Full article: Government wants to stem flow of powers to Europe so why does it support these new EU-led laws on tobacco? (Conservative Home)

Update: Another Free Society writer, Martin Cullip, has written this article for Spiked – A puffed-up scare over menthol cigarettes.

Worth reading.

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Reader Comments (4)

Congratulations to Martin Culllip for his analysis. It must have taken a lot of work. I hope there are people in positions of power who will register his arguments. I doubt it, sadly, because they would have too much to lose.

Monday, October 7, 2013 at 19:55 | Unregistered CommenterNorman Brand

It's about nothing but destroying the tobacco industry by squeezing weak and vulnerable easy targets - consumers. We can never expect anything from the Tories. I think we know what we have do to. We have nothing to lose LibLabCon - no difference.

Clearly the Tories were too cowardly to implement PP here so gave that over to the Eu so they could say "Wasn't us Guv".

Liars, cheats and cowards.


God help us now NAnna Soubry is in the MOD. If she fancies the colour of the Taliban's clothes over Obama's suit, we're shafted - again.

Monday, October 7, 2013 at 20:14 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Christ, I got as far as reading the first comment on that ConHome article and felt sick. It's a smokerphobic who says until we can prove that genes cause lung cancer let's blame smokers anyway.

Judging by this news and it's supporters comments, the Tory party and it's supporters' level of intellect makes it clear they simply can't be trusted in Govt. They will lose the next election for sure. I know they will in my very marginal constituency. Who wins there will win the election. Cameron clearly doesn't want to win again but then what's the point of even having a UK Govt when clearly Brussels decide and there is no accountability there.

No wonder Reilly is so vocal in Ireland. He clearly knows something we don't and has let his bog gob run away with him.

Monday, October 7, 2013 at 20:30 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Pat. it was established that lung cancer is associated with a major gene in the 1970s ;And in the late 90 Gaudermann established that there was no interaction between this gene and smoking.

Unfortunately for the antis the latest evidence from the USA suggests that non-smokers are now at higher risk of developing lung cancer than smokers.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 12:17 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

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