Taxes on tobacco alternatives undermine harm reduction efforts

In Politics by Michael Rae

The government, at state and federal levels, imposes excise taxes on combustible cigarettes. Principally, the taxes serve to offset the costs smokers impose on non-smokers through increased healthcare demands, deter use (especially among minors), and raise revenue. 

Since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was tasked with regulating tobacco products in 2009, a host of safer nicotine alternatives to cigarettes have entered the market, including e-cigarettes, modern oral nicotine, and heated tobacco. The FDA has authorized these products as part of a harm reduction strategy so that smokers who are unwilling or unable to quit cigarettes through traditional methods can switch