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Illinois Senate President: Cigarette Tax Hike Top Priority

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An increase on the cigarette tax is one of the Illinois Senate President’s top priorities.

State Senate President John Cullerton says he’ll again push for a higher tax on cigarettes. A dollar increase passed the Senate earlier this year, but the proposal stalled in the House.

CULLERTON: Maybe I can go over and help lobby, if the Speaker will let me come over to the House, I can go walk, walk and talk to some of the members and see if I can convince some of them to vote for it.

Cullerton called a cigarette tax hike one of his most pressing agenda items for the coming year. The Democrat says not only will it bring in revenue Illinois sorely needs...

CULLERTON: ...but also, it has this dramatic impact on reducing people’s desire to smoke.

He says fewer smokers would save Illinois more money, by reducing Medicaid costs attributed to smoking-related health problems. Cullerton says he expects there will be enough votes to get a cigarette tax increase passed.

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