Pres. Trump to propose ban on flavorings used in e-cigarettes

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File – In this Aug. 28, 2019, file photo, a man exhales while smoking an e-cigarette in Portland, Maine. Oregon’s public health physician said Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019, that a person who contracted a severe respiratory illness and died after using an e-cigarette had purchased a vaping device containing marijuana oil at a state-legal dispensary. The death is the second linked by public health officials nationwide to vaping and the first linked to an e-cigarette purchased at a dispensary. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump says his administration will propose banning thousands of flavors used in e-cigarettes amid an outbreak of breathing problems tied to vaping.

State and federal health authorities are investigating hundreds of breathing illnesses reported in people who have used e-cigarettes and other vaping devices.

No single device, ingredient or additive has been identified.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has issued an executive order banning flavored vaping devices, was quick to support the White House announcement.

“I’m glad this administration is doing the right thing and following Michigan’s lead to ban flavored vaping products. This is great news for our kids, our families, and our overall public health. Right now, companies are getting our kids hooked on nicotine by marketing flavors like apple juice, bubble gum, and candy. Banning these flavors is a bold step that will keep our kids healthy and safe from the harmful effects of vaping. I’m proud that Michigan has been a leader on this issue, and I’m ready to continue working to protect our kids and our public health.” 

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar says the Food and Drug Administration will develop guidelines to remove all e-cigarette flavors from the market, especially those favored by children.

The FDA regulates e-cigarettes and has authority to ban vaping flavors, but has resisted calls to take that step.

Instead, the agency has said it is studying the role of flavors in vaping products, including whether they help adult smokers quit traditional cigarettes.

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