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Business Group Opposes Tobacco Suit

October 19, 1999
By: Kristin Marinec
State Capital Bureau

A leading Missouri trading group is fuming over the federal lawsuit against the nation's largest tobacco companies. Kristin Marinec has that story from Jefferson City.

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Associated Idustries of Missouri says the 25 billion dollar federal lawsuit is an abuse of political power.

The group's president says it's also unfair to impose significantly high taxes on legal products like cigarettes.

Chris Long expresses concerns about the precedent the lawsuits may set.

Actuality:Long
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Contents: Associated Industries of Missouri President Chris Long says right now many businesses are being litigated out of businesses.

Members of the group include Anheiser Busch, Hallmark and Southwestern Bell. Reporting from the state capitol, I'm Kristin Marinec.


Associated Industries of Missouri says the federal government should lay off the tobacco industry because products like cigarettes are legal.

Included in the group's 1500 members are Anheiser Busch, Hallmark and Southwestern Bell.

A spokesman for Anheiser Busch says the company agrees with the group's opposition.

St. Louis representative Catherine Hanaway says such government intervention could get out of hand.

Actuality:Hanaway
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Contents: St. Louis Representative Catherine Hanaway says it sound ludicrous but someday the government could sue McDonalds for fattening foods.

The federal lawsuit is asking for 25 billion dollars and says the tobacco industry deceived the government. Reporting from the state capitol, I'm Kristin Marinec.