President Obama scolds tobacco firms for fighting new labels

President Barack Obama speaks about exports, jobs, and the economy, Wednesday, July 7, 2010, in the East Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

President Barack Obama speaks about exports, jobs, and the economy, Wednesday, July 7, 2010, in the East Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama, recently pronounced
tobacco-free, has tough words for cigarette makers.

In a White House web video, the president says some tobacco
companies are fighting new cigarette warning labels because they
don't want to be honest about the consequences. Several tobacco
firms have sued to block graphic new Food and Drug Administration
labels for cigarette packs.

The Obama video observes Thursday's 36th "Great American
Smokeout" by the American Cancer Society.

Obama says the country has made progress in reducing the number
of Americans who smoke but notes that 46 million are still
addicted.

Obama has fought his own smoking habit by chewing nicotine gum.
His last medical report, issued Oct. 31, declared him tobacco-free.

He concedes quitting smoking is hard and adds, "Believe me, I
know."

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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