New tobacco age limit signed into law

Gov. Inslee today signed new age restrictions on tobacco and vaping products into law after a yearslong fight to get them through the Legislature.

Daniel Mason, 18, was already smoking when he entered the Marine Corps to fight World War II.

He was 79 when he died from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

That’s why his daughter, Lynda Walrath, helped to fight the successful battle to raise the legal age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21.

Supporters say the new legislation now requires people to be 21 to buy cigars and cigarettes, cigarette paper, tobacco and vaping products. This will take effect on Jan. 1 of next year.

The science shows that 95 percent of today's smokers started before they reached the age of 21, and shows how important it is to keep them away from cigarettes before then.

Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Gov. Jay Inslee spent seven years fighting for the change.

Inslee says many future children will never know why their lives were saved.

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