TOBACCO: Clinton Ready to Sign Emergency Approps. Bill
"Earlier veto threats disappeared" Friday as the White House said it expected President Clinton to sign the $15 billion emergency spending bill approved by a House-Senate conference committee last week -- including its provision to allow states free reign in spending their respective tobacco windfalls. Clinton had previously insisted that either the federal government co-opt a share of the cash, or that the states promise to use it to fund health and anti-smoking programs only. Linda Ricci, a spokesperson for the Office of Management and Budget, said though the White House was still reviewing the agreement, "we expect the president will be presented with a bill he can sign" (Mitchell, New York Times, 5/15). The Washington Post reports that the "measure is scheduled to come up for final House and Senate votes sometime next week" (Pianin, 5/15). In a Scripps Howard op-ed decrying the use of an "emergency" spending bill for all sorts of other legislative ends, Dale McFeatters writes, "The money to pay for all of this will come from the Social Security surplus. Imagine what this Congress will be like when the real spending measures come up later this year" (Scripps/Nando Times, 5/16).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.