Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Breathing easier?

Iowa house leaders did an about face. Just a few weeks ago, they didn't think it was a good idea to let you keep smoking in bars, restaurants and casinos. Then, the senate passed a ban nearly everywhere. Now, house members apparently think businesses can't survive without smokers. Businesses, under the house plan passed today, have to ban smoking when anyone under 21 is there. But they can allow it other times (this is providing they also serve alcohol). Restaurants no longer have to offer non-smoking sections.

Here's the vote tally for the day as we wait to see what the senate will do with this.


On the question "Shall the bill pass?" (H.F. 2212)

The ayes were, 59:

Abdul-Samad Anderson Bailey Baudler
Bell Berry Bukta Clute
Cohoon Dandekar Davitt Dolecheck
Ford Frevert Gaskill Gayman
Gipp Heddens Jacobs Jacoby
Jochum Kelley Kressig Kuhn
Lensing Lykam Mascher May
McCarthy Mertz Miller, H. Miller, L.
Oldson Olson, D. Olson, T. Palmer
Petersen Quirk Reasoner Reichert
Schickel Schueller Shomshor Smith
Staed Taylor, D. Taylor, T. Thomas
Tomenga Van Fossen Wendt Wessel-Kroeschell
Whitaker Whitead Wiencek Winckler
Wise Zirkelbach Mr. Speaker
Murphy

The nays were, 40:

Alons Arnold Boal Chambers
De Boef Deyoe Drake Foege
Forristall Granzow Grassley Heaton
Hoffman Horbach Hunter Huseman
Huser Kaufmann Lukan Olson, R.
Olson, S. Paulsen Pettengill Raecker
Rants Rasmussen Rayhons Roberts
Sands Soderberg Struyk Swaim
Tjepkes Tymeson Upmeyer Van Engelenhoven
Watts Wenthe Windschitl Worthan


Absent or not voting, 1:

Greiner

Want to send your thoughts to your local legislator? This link will even help you figure out who your local leader is.

59 comments:

Anonymous said...

What is happening here? Most of us don't smoke, so why do we have to suffer when smokers want to smoke? If they want to kill themselves, then fine. But don't kill me, too. Go outside and smoke. Leave me alone. And let me breathe.

Anonymous said...

I am a smoker. I enjoy going to the casinos and eating in restaurants. If I am just one example of the loss of revenue for these establishments, it will make a difference. My husband and I make approximately $100,000 per year and eat out frequently. We already avoid restaurants that don't allow smoking. I think it ought to be up to the individual businesses to decide how to handle this issue.

Tim - Ankeny said...

Help me understand how banning smoking for almost every establishment in Iowa would effect the businesses of Iowa like a restaurant or casino. Wouldn't this even the playing field. No options anywhere. What other options would people have to eat or gamble? Leave the state I don't think so. People will still gamble and eat where they go now. Give me a break I am sure everyone who goes to Harrah's casino is going to gamble not for the chance to smoke.

Anonymous said...

This version is completely ridiculous and offers no protection whatsoever to nonsmoking adults, including employees of public establishments, who are clearly in the majority.

Daniel said...

I am a lung-cancer survivor and I only have one lung, but I believe the smoking issue goes much deeper that the alleged "Protecting Iowa's Children" rhetoric.

I should be the one to decide which business to patronize. I don't want or need the government doing it for me. If I am offended by, or afraid of second-hand smoke, I have the freedom to go to a non-smoking establishment.

The government should NOT be allowed to tell business owners how to run their businesses. If they get away with this, it won't be much longer until they are trying to legislate which foods businesses are allowed to serve due to possible health issues.

It could be opening the proverbial "Pandora's Box."

Jason Caskey said...

I avoid smoky bars and always sit in the no smoking section when I dine out, but I feel strongly it is NOT government's place to dictate to proprietors whether to allow smoking in their establishment or not. Such establishments are NOT public places belonging to the community;they are privately owned businesses, and if the very act of smoking is still legal, then the owner of the business should have the right to decide whether or not to allow it. What next; will the do-gooders in government out to save the people from themselves next want to dictate whether I can smoke in my own home or not?

Anonymous said...

I think they made the right decision. These politicians think that they can now tell a person how they have to live. When did we become a communistic society? When you bring a moral issue to their attention and ask them to act on that - they are too weak-kneed to act! But they raise the cost of cigarettes and then tell the smoker they can't light up in public - is that hypocritical? I believe some would say it is. And if they are taking away the right to smoke in public, does that mean they will recind the tax on cigarettes? I doubt it. Business owners should have the right to decide if they want smoking allowed in their establishment. It should not be the place of politicians to get their noses in areas where it doesn't belong! People have a choice whether to patronize a smoking or non-smoking establishment. Just as workers can choose not to work in that establishment. This is as bad as trying to legislate from the bench! The entire issue was uncalled for and a waste of the legislatures time. Thanks to the business owners for standing up on behalf of their establishments and their customers!

Anonymous said...

Iowa just doesn't get it! I am a former smoker, having done so for over 40 years before I quit (cold turkey). This is not about "smokers rights". They don't have any when it comes to affecting the health of others, children or adults. I recently moved back to Iowa from California where you can't smoke in any public place. Period! This includes all bars, restaurants, public parks, public transportation, etc. It has not had any negative effect on businesses. The bars and restaurants are just as full as before, just not with smokers! That's the way it should be and if you have to smoke do it in the privacy of your own home or car (hopefully you will not have children present). This is a terrible habit and if it were not for the tobacco lobby putting $$$ in the pockets of some of our politicians Iowa would have a no smoking law already on the books. Wake up!!!

Anonymous said...

anonymous , Go Out Side, why should anyone have to breath your smoke, why should any of the employees, I do not want my kids or grandkids or any family member working for anyone who allows smokers , Why can't you step out side? Even if I sit in the non-smoking section we smell it. These are at family establishments ! I used to smoke , I quit! But I never smoked around other people. It was my habit no one else! Get It! No All you smokers have not and that is why we have to make a law. We do not want you smoking around us any more. STOP PLEASE

Anonymous said...

In all of this debating over exceptions, I would like everyone to consider individuals with developmental disabilites and mental illness. Many of these individuals live on publice state property. They choose to smoke, and we respect that choice. If they were to ban smoking on public area, these individual would not be able to smoke in there own homes, as you or I were.

Anonymous said...

It's ironic that they voted to allow smoking as they all had American Cancer Daffodils on their desks! Get a Clue! Most people know the dangers of smoking- if you don't - visit your local hospital,check out the cancer treatments available for smokers.
This should be enough to convince business owners that they are dying to let smokers join them as future patients!

Anonymous said...

I am a former smoker. Just think of how many non-smokers do not frequent establishments that allow their customers to smoke. I will not go into a bar/restaurant if it smells and is filled with smoke. I do not buy into the argument that says that businesses will suffer by banning smokers. What is this about anyway, the public health or $$$ in the pockets of business owners? Get real.
To the anonymous lady who thinks that the loss of her business is going to have that much of an effect on the places she and her $100,000 a year smoking husband frequent, it won't! And to the anonymous smoker who thinks that we have a "right to smoke", we don't!

Anonymous said...

Stay out of the Private Sector period! Let the owners make the decision and the Dollar do the voting! I’m a Conservative and damn proud of it! Government is getting too intrusive on Personal Freedoms. What freedom do the Liberals have in mind next to infringe on? Guns! Serving obese people? How many miles a day you can drive before a “Carbon Excise Tax” is enforced? Less Government not more. I’m a ‘Nam Vet and very sorry to see the USA going in this Liberal/Progressive way.

Anonymous said...

What the house did is a freakin' joke? Vote them out!

Anonymous said...

lets vote them all out! when does buisness mean more than the lives of citizens? people that smoke will still go out to eat. dont tell me they all smoke anytime they want at work.

Anonymous said...

smoking is only one item causing rising health care costs what of obeasity. I never see any mention of this

Anonymous said...

Previous blogger: Obesity? It's not on there agenda, YET! If it keeps going this way, we'll all be in uniforms goose stepping around town.

Anonymous said...

I have several friends that have moved here recently from Minnesota and they really enjoyed frequent visits to the local bars. Even some of them smoke and they liked going home and there clothes not smelling like ashtrays. You are not allowed to smoke at work and are able to go 3-4 hours without a smoke, so why not at restaurants and bars. Just take it out side. If Minn. and California can do it so can we. Please save some lives.

Anonymous said...

I think its pretty bad when a government can tell business owners what they can & cannot do with there own business's. Maybe its time to outlaw the Whopper,french fries,& the Big Mac & while we are at it lets outlaw beer,whiskey & wine!I'am tied of people telling me whats good for me,besides if I die early from cancer or a clogged heart I'll be leaving that much more social security money for someone else !

Anonymous said...

This is NOT a conservative vs. liberal issue! I know I've said that before. There are a lot of sensible conservatives who want to see a smoking ban that makes all public smoking illegal. There are also a lot of liberals who want to keep smoking where ever they please, with reckless disregard for others.

We need to ban ALL public smoking ASAP. As a conservative Republican, I'm proud to say that! It's not liberal or communistic, it's just common sense. This latest house version of the bill is a joke and way too complicated to ever enforce.

Keep it simple. Ban all public smoking. Period.

Brenda said...

My husband and I are both physically fit. We work out every day. We are striving to live long healthy lives! What gives smokers the right to destroy everything that we are striving for. To be healthy. They can light up before they eat out and then again after they leave. You don't see anyone smoking in the malls, they seem to manage that o.k.

Anonymous said...

Leave it to the Business owner NOT the Government to decide their clientelle! Government is too top heavy the way it is! Don't add more "laws" that are ridiculas!

Anonymous said...

Secondhand smoke kills! GET IT?
Secondhand smoke kills! How much loader does it need to be said? Secondhand smoke is the leading preventable cause of cancer, lung disease and heart disease. Everyone has the right to breath clean air and no one has the right to blow their smoke into the air of public places. What the Iowa House of Representatives did today is tragic and it is time they be voted out of office.

Anonymous said...

So do all of you that think the business owner should decide think we should let the business owners decide if they want to carry worker's comp insurance or have sanitary conditions in their kitchens or have fire exits or want to clear their sidewalks of ice and snow or want to build a resturant in the middle of your residential street or dump their garbage in the alley etc, etc. These are all to protect the public good just like no smoking in a public place would. Isn't this just common sense?

Anonymous said...

The Iowa House apparently wants to keep the state in the stone age of nonsmoker protection from secondhand smoke. Caving in to the interests of business owners and their smoking patrons does a serious disservice to the nonsmoking majority. Hello! This is a public health issue! Secondhand smoke kills innocent bystanders with the reckless detachment of a drive-by shooter. Blowing this opportunity to embrace the inevitable would be a sorry legacy for this legislature.

Anonymous said...

I am not a smoker, however I do know quite a few people who do and I think this is just another example of the government trying to run our lives. It is surprising to me how they tend to attack smokers by raising cigarette taxes, but did you even hear them mention the topic of raising alcohol taxes. The reason is because they all don't smoke but they probably all drink.

Anonymous said...

What are the health effects of obesity, breathing in the dirt from farm fields, the chemicals from small aircraft as it dumps on the fields as you drive beside it, the amonia from farm animal waste? Maybe the people from the cities should come breath the rural air.All this causes cancer also.

Anonymous said...

Exempting restaurants and bars from the smoking ban kind of defeats the purpose of it in the first place. If smokers can't frequent these places for an hour or two to eat dinner without lighting up, they have a much more serious problem than they want to admit! Maybe they should just stay home and smoke their cancer sticks!

Anonymous said...

This goes farther than just the Smoking Ban. If it passes, it'll be just one more feather in the Liberals' cap to gaining more and more control over everyone's life! Wake up people! Quit giving Government so much authority!

Anonymous said...

What kind of magnet draws non- smokers to estabalisments who allow smoking only to complain about it later?
If I don't like a bussiness for any reason I don't go there.We all know what a no smoking sign means, maybe there should be two signs available.Smoking allowed,if it offends you, please leave. You do have a choice.

Anonymous said...

I'm retired, have a camping trailer and a boat. I expected to keep using them in Iowa. The new smoking law,bans smoking on rv campsites,and on the lakes.

The camper next to you can have a campsite with a lot of smoke blowing at you, but you can't smoke. I fail to see where smoking in a boat on a lake harms anyone.This doesn't make any sense.If this bill passes, I will not be supporting Iowa's parks or lakes as I have in the past.Health advocates are needed. but some of them are telling half truths and going overboard. This should not be tolerated by either party.

Anonymous said...

I'm very relieved to see that the Senate rejected the latest House version of the bill. Hopefully we can still get something that bans ALL public smoking, not just for certain people at certain establishments at certain times of day.

This doesn't give liberals (or conservatives) more power. It lets common sense prevail! BAN ALL PUBLIC SMOKING NOW!!!

Anonymous said...

The smoking ban is a HEALTH ISSUE! I cant believe this is even a debate! Its governments job to protect its peoples health! Why is it that we dont believe restaurant,bar and casino workers dont deserve the same treatment as everyone else?
Why are they treated as second class citizens? KEEP THE SENATE PROPOSED BAN OR NOTHING!

Anonymous said...

No one said that smokers can't smoke, they just shouldn't be able to subject me to their smoke. Where are my rights? Why is it that restaurant workers are treated like they don't matter? If Principal said go work somewhere else if you want to be in a non-smoking environment workers would've taken them to court.

Anonymous said...

I don't go to bars where there is smoking but would like to; who wants to reek of smoke for a drink or two? Also, I would always give preference to a restaurant that had a no-smoking policy.

Anonymous said...

I go to Prairie Meadows but only for the races. I can't stand the smelly casino and don't stop long enough to play.

Anonymous said...

What is happening to this country? Time after time, the government tries to tell us what we can and cannot do. This happened in a socialist country where the government controls our lives. What's next? Alcohol bans? Driving bans? Where we can buy clothes or medications? By the government attempting to ban smoking, they are not only taking away our right to smoke, but taking away from us what one of the reasons this country was formed for--freedom as long as it was legal.

I don't smoke, but I have family members and friends who do. I went a college where smoking was prohibited within 10 feet of any building, but people could still have the freedom of choice. In restaraunts, there are nonsmoking and smoking sections to benefit everyone. When I go to a bar or restaraunt, I know there are smoking sections, but it's MY choice to say nonsmoking. We should NOT be penalizing people for smoking since it is 100% legal. Some people have tried to quit and can't. Others do it for a social reason. Why should we penalize those people for a choice they made?

Most people are more than willing to not smoke near you if you ask them. It's not illegal for someone to smoke if they're of age 18. If there's going to be a smoking ban, we might as well just say cigarettes and tobacco use is illegal and throw everyone in jail since even caregivers can't smoke in their own house or car--that THEY PAY FOR.

I am fully against the smoking ban. I think businesses, schools, and other public places have done an excellent job of compromising by no smoking within a certain distance from buildings, or by making smoking and nonsmoking sections. If you're against smoking, do something about it. Stop complaining, respect those who do smoke, and just don't sit in the smoking section.

Anonymous said...

When we go out to eat we always have to wait because the non smoking section is always full and the smoking section is usually half empty. That should be a sign to the owners as who is going to give them more business. How would smokers like it if I blew the smoke from my vehicle's exhaust pipe in their face while eating. Smokers choose to put poison toxins in theirs and their childrens bodies. Second hand smoke is a killer! They can wait until after leaving.

Anonymous said...

Smoking needs to be banned from places that serve food. I just moved here from Las Vegas and they have that ban. I was shocked when I heard Iowa didnt have that ban. I cant believe a smoker would pay money to get cancer and pay more money to fight it. Those of us whose choose not to go that route should have a right to breathe healthy air and live longer to see our children grow.

Anonymous said...

If we dont pass a smoking ban, then why should murderers be locked up? Isnt that discrimination for smokers to get the right to kill thousands of non-smokers with secondhand smoke each year! We should have the right to save all these lives by passing one little ban. They can smoke in their own environment.

Anonymous said...

To the previous blogger:You must be a Liberal/Progressive because you don't see the Big Picture. The second hand smoke is hyped by your type! Radon gas is the biggest cause of Lung Cancer, per advertisements by the American Lung Association on TV, and Iowa leads the nation on this issue! And another one by the ALA was on a segment on CBS Sunday Morning stating that Microscopic Soot poses more of a health hazard than second hand smoke ever will. Microscopic soot is produced by all cars, trucks, buses, power generating facilities, etc. Should we put a ban on these too! NO! That would step on your "rights", and you'd be squealling like a stuck hog!
Leave the private sector to their decision about smoking. Not the Government!

Anonymous said...

I agree, the government shouldn't rub their noses in the private sectors. But what MOST people fail to realize is that with this smoking ban, they're wanting to go much much deeper than that. They're wanting to go as far as telling you if you can smoke in your own house, in your own car, on your own property--THAT IS 100% YOURS. So, go read the proposed ban and the provisions and read about the areas that the media and the government DOESN'T want you to know about--them taking away your right to smoke on your property. If they get this passed, who knows what they'll take away next.

Anonymous said...

Give me a break... You Smoke Nazis that whine about the health issue of second-hand smoke affecting your health just flat turn me off... I don't care if restaraunts ban smoking, that's ok... I can deal with not smoking for the time it takes to eat, but in bars, where the major function is to consume alcohol, is going too far. If you're THAT much of health freak, you shouldn't be drinking anyway...

The smoking ban as proposed is EXACTLY the same one as what was in effect in Nazi Germany. Adolf Hitler was a rabid anti-smoker, and the Nazi Government did exhaustive research on cancer and second-hand smoke, and as a result, laws were passed banning smoking on government property, as well as private business. Get one thing through your heads, non-smokers... Although a bar may be OPEN to the public, it's still PRIVATE property. The only people that Iowa law REQUIRES you let enter a drinking establishment are Law Enforcement Officers and Health Inspectors in the performance of their duties...

Don't give me that "for the children" crap, either.. Kids don't belong in a bar, anytime, under any circumstances. If you have to take your kids with you to a bar, you're not much of a parent anyway...
This whole thing is just one more example of the Nanny-state mentality.

Anonymous said...

Lets let all of the smoking population (what little is left)smoke in bars that don't serve food. It should be their right to kill themselves slowly in a bar in Iowa. Heres the catch- smokers should not be allowed in any non-smoking establishment ever. Especially the mad smoker,nanny-state guy! I don't want to be in the same room as that guy.

Anonymous said...

That's a good point. Now that you mention it, smokers do tend to have worse tempers than non-smokers, as a whole. I'm sure there's some scientific reason behind it. They get so pissy when you dare to tell them that they don't have the right to contribute to your death! It's absolutely crazy.

We need a smoking ban, and quick! And not the stupid one the House came up with that won't change anything.

Anonymous said...

ECONOMY BOOST!!! A smoking ban, especially for restaraunts, is great for the revenue of these establishments. Think of the thousands of residents who have breathing problems that cant go to these places because of their condition would finally be able to. These owners have to want to increase their business, you would think. You would gain alot of new patrons plus still have the same people coming in because smokers are still gonna come in for the food, dont let them threaten you by saying they wont. And if some dont, you wont even know it because your business would increase that much more! Common sense.

Anonymous said...

What is wrong with Iowa?! All these other states are passing this ban with ease! Smokers know they can wait to smoke after they have eaten and leave. They cant be that inconsiderate. I dont really think its a government issue, it's a public breathing rights issue. Dont let Iowa be the last to pass this or people will really think Iowa stands for Idiots Out Wandering Around!!

Anonymous said...

This smoking ban should be passed without questioning. There is no argument when its simple logic. As for the Liberal/Progressive and Nazi bloggers, you have alot of personal issues to be dealing with. This smoking ban should be the least of your worries. Please get some help. Im sure there are some great treatments out there for people going through what you are.

Anonymous said...

The thing about this is not so much about the "ban", but about allowing Government to take away individual freedoms one by one! Karl Marx will be proud of us if we allow this to continue. Oh, throw in Adolph Hitler, too!

Anonymous said...

I was reading some of these blogs before I posted my own and it sounds like smokers keep whining and blaming the government so this wont get passed. If the government wants to change other things and it means passing the smoking ban, then I think most of us are all for it. Whatever it takes!

Anonymous said...

Im for the ban just to get smoking out of restaraunts. Smoking is like having Aids, you can die if you come in contact with it. But smokers are to selfish to realize that. Also I never knew Hitler was for a smoking ban. Go figure, he did have a heart and a bigger one than you smokers. Isnt that a shame.

Anonymous said...

Socialism, Communinism,Progressive, Liberalism, it still comes down to personnal choice! Seems like the current Party in Charge doesn't want to give us that choice! But that's typical of Democrats, all they want is control and tax raises to fund all their little projects!

Anonymous said...

I am tired of the government trying to turn the US into a police state. I am a former smoker - but I believe that the government should not be able to tell businesses how to run their business. If they want to allow smoking and you don't like it - don't go there - simple! On the other hand, there are several small bars that will go under if smoking is not allowed. If you don't want to work around smoke, then don't apply for a job where they allow smoking - again, simple. Next the government will be telling fat people that they can't go out to eat - and I don't want to hear the excuse that someone being overweight doesn't hurt anyone else. It hurts me monetarily when insurance pays for all of the diseases that are caused from being overweight or things like drinking too much - the list can just go on and on!!

Anonymous said...

To the previous blogger: I agree with you! If and when this bill passes, I hope the Business owners s*** can the employees that support it! Bite the hand that feeds you! I guess there's no such thing as Personal Responsibility any more. We need the "government" to tell what we need to say and do!

Anonymous said...

be nice to see what tax will take the place on lost revenue from tabacco. maybe it should be for those people complaing about it and those who will be crying about lost programs because of the tax lost.

Anonymous said...

If and when this passes, I hope the Casinos cut off all the extra funding to Government! They should tell them, "Sorry, you want to cut into our profits, we just cut into yours!" Then the small business owners should let them know what their expected losses are going to be, so The Great All Knowing Government can make plans to raise more taxes to support all their projected giveaway programs!

Anonymous said...

hard to belive these people are wasting our time and tax dollars on such crap there so many other things of more importance that nee to be done

Anonymous said...

Governments have to have laws to protect those that can not protect themselves for the good of all people.We have to have a smoking ban because people and businesses can't seem to do the right thing on their own. Smokers don't care about their own health,what in the world would make you think they would care about second-hand smoke.If you are a smoker I think you should not go to any non-smoking establishments.If you are a smoker that works in a non-smoking environment- get another job.Sound familiar? That makes about as much sense.

Anonymous said...

The Government DOES NOT need to make laws that personal choice should be the deciding factor! Do you intentionally go to an establishment that you don't like? Probably not! Why? BECAUSE YOU DON'T LIKE THE ATMOSPHERE! Then don't go to the PRIVATE BUSINESSES that have an atmosphere that you don't like! SEE! It's called personal CHOICE! If all the nonsmokers want a place to go, that opens a nice slot in the FREE ENTERPRISE SYSTEM to open up establishments to accomodate that clientel! Isn't that amazing! There's room for everyone! If that doesn't help you out, read a little "book" that Karl Marx wrote, because that's where things are headed!