A June 30 solicitation from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, seeking support from constituents for the proposed FDA tobacco legislation sought by Philip Morris, suggests once again (incorrectly and deceptively) that the legislation is opposed by Big Tobacco and that supporting the legislation is therefore fighting Big Tobacco.
The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids' plea states: "Last week, we asked E-champions to share how tobacco use has impacted their lives. Within a few days we received more than 200 personal stories sharing the devastating effects that tobacco use brings. E-champions described how loved ones' lives were tragically cut short because of deadly tobacco addictions. Grandparents and parents missed weddings, graduations and births due to tobacco-related deaths. Has your life been impacted by tobacco use? There's still time to add your voice! Click here to visit VoicesAgainstTobacco.org and share your story. Right now Congress is considering a bill that would give the Food and Drug Administration the authority to regulate tobacco products. Your stories are crucial to passing this life-saving legislation. Not only do these stories allow you to share your concern and outrage over Big Tobacco, but they also help our team on Capitol Hill. Hearing stories directly from their constituents help Members of Congress realize that tobacco hurts their own community. Please visit VoicesAgainstTobacco.org today and add your story to the hundreds who have already spoken against the harms of a deadly tobacco addiction. ... Help us fight Big Tobacco by sharing how tobacco has affected you."
The Rest of the Story
Once again, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has disseminated a deceptive communication which misleads its constituents about the FDA tobacco legislation. The Campaign is deceiving its constituents by suggesting that the legislation is uniformly opposed by Big Tobacco, when in fact the largest member of Big Tobacco - Philip Morris - actually supports the legislation.
This deceptive campaign is really getting out of control. One after another, the deceptive communications continue to roll out from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. The organization simply does not appear to be capable of telling the truth. It is now about as trustworthy as the very companies that it is claiming to be fighting in the halls of Congress.
Today I announce the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids Honesty Challenge Sweepstakes. Here's how it works:
I am challenging the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids to put out one - just one - honest communication that does not deceive its constituents and the public about the nature of the proposed FDA tobacco legislation. And I am offering a financial reward - a virtual sweepstakes - for a successful response to this challenge. Reaping in this money will be even easier than soliciting personal donations to support the YAYAs. All the Campaign has to do is tell the truth.
Here are the dollar amounts the Campaign will receive for being honest about various critical facts concerning the legislation:
If the Campaign tells the public that Philip Morris is supporting this bill, I will contribute (no questions asked) $25 to the Campaign.
If the Campaign tells the public that Philip Morris is supporting this bill and that they are supporting it because it will help the company's bottom line, I will contribute (no questions asked) $50 to the Campaign.
If the Campaign tells the public that Philip Morris is supporting the bill because it contains a number of specific provisions that were inserted to protect the company's profits, I will contribute (no questions asked) $100 to the Campaign.
If the Campaign tells the public that the bill was negotiated between itself and Philip Morris through Congressional intermediaries, I will contribute $250 to the Campaign.
If the Campaign tells the public that the bill was negotiated between itself and Philip Morris and that it contains specific provisions that weaken the FDA's ability to regulate tobacco products in order to protect Big Tobacco financial interests, I will contribute $350 to the Campaign.
If the Campaign tells the public that the bill was negotiated between itself and Philip Morris and that it contains specific provisions that weaken the FDA's ability to regulate tobacco products in order to protect Big Tobacco financial interests, and that these provisions were placed into the legislation and approved by the Campaign because it didn't want to risk losing Philip Morris' support, I will contribute $500 to the Campaign.
Here is the only caveat: the Campaign must be honest in the next communication that it sends out. This is a one-chance sweepstakes. If the next communication sent out by the Campaign related to this topic is dishonest, as its previous communications have been, I will find a different way to use the money that I have allocated to this sweepstakes.
Note: This offer is void where prohibited by law. Any sweepstakes contributions will be tax deductible to the maximum amount allowed by the law. No purchase necessary. Sweepstakes is offered only to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids or its affiliated lobbying group - the Tobacco-Free Action Fund. Prize is non-transferable by winner. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify the entrant if these Sweepstakes rules are not followed. By entering, you agree to comply with all applicable law and these Sweepstakes rules, and you agree to abide by all decisions of the Sponsor. Sweepstakes entrant may enter beginning July 5, 2007. Contest ends on August 5, 2007. All decisions of Sponsor are final. Sponsor is not responsible for the inability to contact winners resulting from incomplete, incorrect, incomprehensible, illegible, or out of service e-mail addresses or phone numbers provided by entrants.
Odds of Winning. If the entrant tells the truth, odds of winning are 100%. If the entrant is dishonest, misleading, or deceptive, the odds of winning are 0%.