23 September 2016
Former US Speaker of the House, John Boehner, has recently joined as a member of the Board of Directors of Reynolds American Inc (RAI). Reynolds, the makers of such cigarettes as Camel and Newports, and John Boehner, a current smoker, especially of Camels, seem like a match made in heaven. Boehner will serve on the board governance committee as they try to navigate the new tobacco regulations (once again, not a big surprise here).
In a public statement, a Boehner spokesman said that, “RAI is is striving to transform the tobacco industry through innovative strategies that include speeding the decline in tobacco use among young people and reducing the harm caused by smoking. These are objectives Speaker Boehner supports and looks forward to helping RAI advance through his service on the board.”
While I will offer no opinion about whether or not RAI, specifically, is in fact trying to reduce youth use and reduce the harms caused by smoking, I will say that historically, the tobacco industry has been targeting youth to use, especially those in minority communities. In fact, Asian countries have actually seen a rise in Tobacco use and sales, whereas, in other continents, tobacco sales and use are declining. To me, I would love to see their strategies on how they are going to reduce youth use. If it is anything like before, then it will not be very much.
What do you think of John Boehner joining the board of the second largest Tobacco Company in the country? Comment down below.