21 to buy tobacco in SC? Lawmaker proposes constitutional referendum

(Photo: Pixabay via MGN Online)

Should buying tobacco and nicotine products in South Carolina come with the same age restrictions as buying alcohol?

One Palmetto State lawmaker wants South Carolinians to decide for themselves in a constitutional referendum on raising the age for tobacco purchases to 21.

Rep. Todd Rutherford, a Columbia Democrat, introduced the proposal Thursday, February 7, in the House of Representatives. Currently, the proposal is under review by the House Judiciary Committee

If the proposal made it through the General Assembly and were signed by the governor, voters would have the chance to say "Yes" or "No" in an upcoming election to an amendment of Section 14, Article 17 of the South Carolina Constitution.

That area of the state constitution is where South Carolina's 21-and-over age requirement for alcoholic beverage sales is established.

Rutherford's proposal is to add language expanding the age restrictions to the purchase and possession tobacco products, cigarettes, and alternative nicotine products, which ostensibly places electronic cigarette and "vaping" products under the same umbrella.

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