Tobacco Center Faculty Blog

May 19, 2012

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

The tobacco companies are working assiduously to make it look like there is a genuine grassroots opposition to California Proposition 29.  We have over 802 million pages of previously secret tobacco industry documents in the UCSF Legacy Tobacco Documents Library.  My colleague Kate Swartz did quick searches on many of the organizations whose names appear on No on 29 materials.  While we did not have time to screen all these documents but it is clear that there are thousands of documents linking these groups (often financially) to Big Tobacco.   They are hardly independent voices.

By the way, just because we did not find documents for some of the organizations does not mean that there are no financial or other ties.  The most recent of the industry documents are several years old.  In addition, we only searched on the organization names without doing more sophisticated digging.

Click on the links to peruse the documents and see what you think.

Stars indicate appearance of organization in Prop 29 Mailers (mailer specified)


May 16, 2012

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Rebecca Schane, Jodi Prochaska and I just published a paper in Nicotine and Tobacco Research that compared counseling nondaily smokers on the effects of secondhand smoke on others with counseling on the dangers of smoking to the smokers.  Three months later the 7-day quit rate was three times higher among the people counseled about secondhand smoke.

Read the full paper at

May 16, 2012

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

·         Prop 29 would increase the tobacco tax by $1 a pack of cigarettes with corresponding increases for other tobacco products.
·         The money would go to reinvigorate California’s anti-smoking campaign (about 23 cents), cancer and other medical research (about 70 cents, including some money for facilities), about 3 cents for law enforcement of tobacco control laws, 2 cents for administration.
·         The biggest effect would be to create a dramatic drop in smoking, putting California within reach of realizing former Surgeon General Koop’s vision of a smokefree society.
·         The research money would be managed by a committee consisting of the UCSF, UCB, and UCSC chancellors, cancer center directors and other experts and stakeholders, which grants made on an NIH model to California institutions.
·         Our analysis estimates that, absent 29 passing, smoking will start in increase in the next 5 years in California.  The reason for this is that the state’s current anti-smoking program, funded by a 5 cent cigarette tax passed by the voters in 1988, is running out of steam because inflation has seriously eroded the purchasing power of that 5 cents.

May 13, 2012

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Knowing that they must do their best to stay out of the public eye, the tobacco companies running and financing the campaign against Proposition 29, the initiative Californians will vote on this June to raise cigarette taxes by $1 a pack to fund anti-smoking activities and medical research, the cigarette companies have tried to hide behind various "independent" groups that they have funded for years.

I have already talked about the financial connections between the California Taxpayers Association (CalTax) and the California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Now another group has appeared -- Americans for Prosperity.  (News stories quoting AFP: story 1, story2.)

May 10, 2012

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

The Sacramento Bee just reported that Governor Jerry Brown removed LaDonna Porter from the state scientific committee charged with evaluating potential water pollutants for the state of California.  Porter has served as spokesdoctor for two tobacco industry campaigns against cigarette tax increases, as well as supported industry positions opposing regulation of perchlorate, a toxic water pollutant (details).   The Bee reported that health groups and Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom called for her removal.

This was an important action by Governor Brown to protect the public interest against tobacco industry interference.  Now he should finish the job by returning the $26,000 campaign contribution Philip Morris gave him last week.