The Nanny State Versus Individual Choice Laid Bare
Big government versus big tobacco took a personal twist on the House floor in debate Wednesday afternoon as one powerful member called out another for his smoking habit.
Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, took to the floor to oppose legislation that would place tobacco under FDA control. One of the most notable smokers in Congress, Boehner assailed the bill as too much regulation, calling it a "bone-headed idea."
Then it was Rep. John Dingell's, D-Mich., turn. The House Commerce Commmittee Chairman and the longest-serving member of the House warned Boehner that "this legislation's on the floor because people are killing themselves smoking these evil cigarettes, and the distinguished gentleman, the minority leader, is going to be among the next to die. He is commmitting suicide every time he puffs on one of those."
Reached for comment, Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel said the minority leader "feels great and -- obviously -- hopes Chairman Dingell is wrong."