The Year Tobacco Taxes Were Rejected At The Ballots — Except For California’s
In other states, the tobacco industry's war chest crushed supporters of the taxes, but in California advocates were able to get the message across to voters.
Tobacco Company Cash Crushes Tax Increases
Between 1980 and 2015, voters approved nearly 70 percent of the 32 tobacco tax hikes that appeared on statewide ballots, according to Ballotpedia, a nonpartisan research group that has tracked them. But in November, voters in North Dakota, Missouri and Colorado defeated measures that would have increased taxes by 23 cents to $1.76 on a pack of cigarettes. ... Tobacco taxes generally are among the least controversial taxes to raise because they affect a small number of voters and the dangers of tobacco use are widely known. State legislatures, in particular, are fond of raising so-called “sin” taxes, as opposed to approving increases in broad-based taxes such as those on income or property. But November’s electorate may have been especially tax averse. (Povich, 1/9)