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Alaska chimes in on cigarette-packaging lawsuit

Alaska Dispatch

According to the Associated Press (via KTUU), Alaska is among 22 states -- plus the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands -- that joined in filing a brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals arguing that the government should be able to require cigarette companies to put graphic cautionary labels on their packaging.

Last month, cigarette companies successfully argued to a District Court judge that the requirement to place the labels on their product would infringe on their right to free speech. The images include pictures of diseased lungs and a smoker's dead body, according to the report. 

"Over forty years' experience with small, obscurely placed text-only warning labels on cigarette packs has demonstrated that they simply do not work," the 24 attorneys general wrote in the brief arguing that the government can require the packaging. "The warning labels reflect the unique magnitude of the problem they address, the deadly and addictive nature of the product, and the unparalleled threat this product and its marketing pose to America's youth."

Alaska joins the states of Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia in the filing, in addition to D.C. and the Virgin Islands. The brief was filed in support of an original appeal brought by the Food and Drug Administration.

Read much more, at KTUU.