Michael Siegel, a public health physician at Boston University School of Public Health, has written a strong critique of several major health groups that normally claim to oppose Big Tobacco -- The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Lung Association, American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association. Siegel finds it strange that they have opposed amendments to proposed legislation giving the U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulatory power over cigarettes. The amendments that the health groups oppose would allow the FDA to remove the nicotine from cigarettes, prohibit the use of menthol and clove as primary flavorings in cigarettes, and increase the size and strength of cigarette warning labels. Opposition by these health groups would greatly benefit Philip Morris, who recently introduced a clove-flavored version of Marlboro in Indonesia. The American Association of Public Health Physicians has taken a strong position against the overall FDA tobacco bill, saying that the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids secretly negotiated with Philip Morris behind the scenes to devise FDA regulations that would improve PM's image without actually diminishing sales.
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