Dayton open to indoor e-cig ban

At Smokeless Smoking in Bloomington, salesman Bobby Frie “vaped” as he set up customers Lainne Knutson and Aaron Miller with e-cigarette supplies. Mark Zdechlik/MPR News

Gov. Mark Dayton said today that he would not veto a bill that would ban the use of e-cigarettes in public indoor spaces, if it is passed by the Legislature.

Members of the House and Senate are debating whether to apply the state’s Clean Indoor Air Act to e-cigarettes, so that they would be treated just like regular cigarettes. Under the act, smoking is banned in bars, restaurants and most other indoor public spaces and workplaces.

Although the Senate bill applies the restrictions to e-cigarettes, the House bill is less restrictive. Dayton said he has concerns about the measure but is open to accepting it.

“I agree with the goal of it but I thought the strategy of it was a bit overreaching for this session,” Dayton said. “If that’s the will of the Legislature, I’m not going to [veto it].  And I do strongly support the first section which is putting restrictions on the availability for minors. With that in there, I’d sign it or let it become law.”

Supporters of the ban say the vapor emitted from e-cigarettes could be harmful. Opponents of the ban say there is no scientific evidence that the e-cigarette vapor causes harm.

  • Starquest

    Well there’s a ringing endorsement.

    • MrE85

      Any port in a storm! ;-)

  • MrE85

    So basically, the final bill will come down to what the HHS conference committee comes up with in the next day or so. Let’s hope it’s the Senate version. It just makes more sense.

  • John Peschken

    “Supporters of the ban say the vapor emitted from e-cigarettes could be harmful. ”

    Can it be so dang difficult to figure out what ingredients are harmful and simply ban them from e-cigs? We know what chemicals are harmful in regular cigarette’s and in general, or at least we should after 50 years of cigarette studies. Instead we run around like fools banning everything in case it “could be harmful”. Slow down and apply some science!