Thursday, January 11, 2007

Smoking Banned in House of Representatives

Article in the New York Times -- House Bans Smoking, and Few Complain, by Anne E. Kornblut:

Democrats banned smoking inside the House on Wednesday. Then they quickly congratulated themselves, squeezing as much symbolism out of the moment as they could.

Whether Democrats are any less inclined to make backroom deals than Republicans, the new majority will be remembered for bringing the rules of the House into line with those in the rest of the District of Columbia, numerous states and corporations, several European countries and all major airlines.

And it did so with surprisingly little outcry from the smoking crowd. ā€œIā€™m O.K. with it,ā€ Representative Mike Simpson, Republican of Idaho, said as he headed out onto an adjoining balcony for a cigarette between votes.

He did, however, glance nostalgically toward the spot where a large ashtray once stood.


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