Government appeals injunction on tobacco warnings

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Dec. 12, 2011

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The Obama administration has appealed a federal judge's order blocking a law that requires graphic images on cigarette packages.

The Food and Drug Administration said in June that the nine text and graphic health warnings would be required to curb tobacco use and encourage users to quit smoking. The labels, scheduled to appear on packages and cartons by September 2012, include images of a man smoking through a tracheotomy hole and a dead person with a surgery-scarred chest.

On Nov. 7, Judge Richard J. Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia blocked the warnings, ruling tobacco companies showed they probably will prevail on their claim that the mandatory images unconstitutionally force commercial speech.

The government appealed the decision on Nov. 29 to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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