Truth to Power

Cough, cough

After LA Times says U.S. reduced tobacco settlement under pressure, Dems seek answers


Democratic congressmen Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Marty Meehan (D-MA) have demanded the Office of Inspector general conduct an inquiry into whether political pressure played a role in the sudden reversal of prosecutors to demand compensation from the tobbacco industry, RAW STORY has learned.

Despite a key government witness asserting that $130 billion is necessary to fund smoking cessation programs, the Justice Department asked the Court for only $10 billion, surprising reporters and those familiar with the issue.

A person familiar with the situation, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Los Angeles Times the change was “forced on the tobacco team by higher-level, politically appointed officials of the Justice Department,” including Associate Atty. Gen. Robert McCallum, who oversees the civil division.</i>

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