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Campaign Contributions and Congressional Voting on Tobacco Policy, 1980–2000

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

John Wright*
Ohio State University


This paper analyzes congressional voting on tobacco issues over two decades. Contrary to existing claims, the analysis shows that the tobacco industry's legislative success is more a function of representatives' regulatory and pro-business ideologies than of tobacco PAC money or a geographically-based tobacco voting bloc. In most cases, the tobacco voting bloc—representatives and senators from major tobacco producing districts and states—is not strong enough to protect and sustain the tobacco price support system, let alone affect the outcome of commercial issues such as cigarette taxes and regulation. The industry's campaign contributions also have sporadic and limited impact on commercial issues affecting tobacco. Only on agricultural issues do tobacco PAC contributions exhibit any influence.

Research Article
Copyright © V.K. Aggarwal 2004 and published under exclusive license to Cambridge University Press 

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