Former Senator Talks About Cracking Down on E-Cigarette Makers
FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — A former North Dakota senator and architect of one of the largest tobacco settlements in U.S. history is speaking out about Minnesota’s court case against vape manufacturer Juul.
Minnesota is the first to take its case against the e-cigarette maker to court, after about 39 other states and territories settled.
Former U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat who served one term, agrees with Minnesota that Juul targets kids to get them addicted to nicotine.
Heitkamp says the trial can bring more parent’s attention to the risk kids are at from vaping.
And she says if the trial goes their way, it could send a message to other manufacturers.
“Um, this is behavior that you knew would addict kids and create long-term harm. Um, you know, you aren’t alone in this business and so it will bring probably other people to the table and change how we regulate vaping in the future,” said Heitkamp.
The jury trial in Hennepin County District Court is expected to last about three weeks.
Minnesota previously won a landmark $7.1 billion settlement with the tobacco industry in 1998.