Report from July 11, 2005 Tobacco Summit III
by Joseph L. Bast


Dear Tobacco Group Member:

The attached report from the July 11, 2005 Tobacco Summit 111 is being submitted for your records. Thank you for your continued support for business and smokers rights.

On Monday, July 11, Heartland co-hosted the "Third Tobacco Summit" with the Midwest Public Affairs Group and Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. Approximately 20 people met to discuss why smoking bans and discriminatory taxes on tobacco products are wrong and what could be done to stop or repeal them.

Heartland's president Joseph Bast led off the meeting by explaining why The Heartland Institute participates in the debate over tobacco policy. Excessive taxes on smokers are fundamentally unfair and unjust, he said, and smoking bans are a violation of private property rights of bar and restaurant owners. "The government doesn't own Joe's Bar and Grill," he said. He also said the war on smokers is based on junk science and dubious legal principles, two trends Heartland repeatedly confronts and opposes in other public policy arenas.

Heartland senior fellow Maureen Martin then discussed the private property rights implications of smoking bans and the recent Supreme Court decision expanding municipal powers of eminent domain. She warned that the Kelo decision would probably make it more difficult to argue that smoking bans fail to meet the "public use" standard or are "takings" requiring compensation.

Jonathan Perman from the Evanston Chamber of Commerce gave a terrific description of how Evanston defeated a proposed smoking ban. The Evanston campaign, described in a great PowerPoint presentation handout, is a model for smoking defenders in other cities. Mark Wincent with Connessione Scientific, Inc., described how air filtration technology can remove virtually all second hand smoke and proposed conducting a demonstration project that could prove the technology works.

Garnet Dawn with Illinois Smokers Rights and Jim Blogg of FORCES Illinois talked about their efforts to rally smokers in the state and handed out copies of Michael McFadden's "Why You Should Vote Against a Ban."

The meeting was small partly because many opponents of a proposed ban on smoking in Chicago's bars and restaurants were lobbying city council members in advance of a hearing scheduled to take place the very next day. However, new allies were found and valuable information shared, adding momentum to Heartland's ongoing effort to inject sound science and respect for individual freedom into this often emotional public policy debate.

Joseph L. Bast

President
The Heartland Institute
19 South LaSalle Street #903 Chicago, IL 60603
phone 312/377-4000
http://www.heartland.org




Meeting - July 11, 2005
The Heartland Institute, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce,
and Midwest Public Affairs Group



Midwest Regional Director Attends Third Tobacco Summit in Chicago, Illinois

Dear Garnet:

Please note the data about the event below has been e-mailed to the Smokers Club and Forces Illinois. We would appreciate your attendance in order to continue the fight for individual freedom of choice. We expect a great program as you can see, with plans for coordinated follow up actions to proceed after this confab. As Chicago, today, actually considers a smoking ban in the City Council, we know that there is a need to circle the wagons for liberty to protect the inalienable rights of tobacco users.

Could you provide another general notice to your membership.

Call me if you have any questions or suggestions on how we can maximize attendance for this event.

Thanks. RWC

Ralph W. Conner
Public Affairs Director
The Heartland Institute
19 South LaSalle Street #903
Chicago, IL 60603
Heartland Institute



On Monday, July 11, 2005, The Heartland Institute, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, and Midwest Public Affairs Group are cohosting a meeting in downtown Chicago to discuss why business and civic leaders should oppose recent tax and legal actions against smokers and what can be done about it. I'm writing to ask you to attend.

Following are the details:

Who: The cohosts are Joseph Bast, The Heartland Institute; Scott McPherson, Midwest Public Affairs Group; and Rob Nash, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. Approximately 100 civic and business leaders are being invited.

What: Brief presentations on why taxpayers, policymakers, and anyone concerned by mandates on business and the erosion of private property rights and the Rule of Law should speak out on this issue, followed by discussion of action items and plans for an ongoing campaign.

When: Monday, July 11, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Where: Chicagoland Chamber conference room, 330 North Wabash #2800, Chicago.

Why: To create a stronger alliance of groups and individuals willing to write letters and op-eds, make phone calls, debate anti-smoking activists, and otherwise get actively involved in the public debate over tobacco policy.

Agenda: A one-page agenda for the meeting is attached in PDF.

RSVP: Call Zwahy'yah McElrath at 312/377-4000 or send email to mcelrath@heartland.org to confirm your intention to attend.

Attendance is free. A buffet lunch will be served. Several experts will be on hand to discuss the tax, health, and legal aspects of smoking and smoking bans.

Among the activities we hope to encourage and support are:

* write letters to the editors and op-eds;
* write letters to elected officials;
* make phone calls to elected officials and reporters;
* get on talk radio discussing the issue;
* conduct background research to share with others;
* post comments, research, and links on Web sites or blogs;
* host events and attend events with experts on the subject;
* attend and/or testify at city, county, and state hearings; and
* distribute leaflets or flyers on college campuses, at hearings, in public places, etc.

As public affairs director for The Heartland Institute, I will be on hand to discuss how he will help support activities in the following ways:

* help submit op-eds electronically to media outlets in Illinois and nationally;
* track media hits using our clipping service and report back to the writers;
* post essays on our Web site and add to PolicyBot, our online database/search engine;
* publish essays in Budget & Tax News, Environment & Climate News, and elsewhere;
* help bring in speakers from out of town, such as Jacob Sullum and Michael Fumento; and
* post a calendar of events on Heartland's Web site as part of the "Smokers' Lounge."

If you have advice or suggestions, or if you want to invite other people to attend, please contact me or one of the other cosponsors. We hope to see you on Monday, July 11. --RWC

AGENDA BELOW:

Welcome to the Third Tobacco Summit!

Monday, July 11, 2005

Robert Nash
Chicagoland. Chamber of Commerce

Scott McPherson
Midwest Public Affairs Group

Joseph Bast
The Heartland Institute

Schedule:

11:00 - 11:15 Welcome and Opening Remarks
Scott McPherson and Joseph Bast

11:15 - 11:30 Feedback & Preliminary Discussion

11:30 - 11:45 Smoking Bans / Issues of Property Rights
Maureen Martin, The Heartland Institute

11:45 - 12:00 Lunch (Self-service sandwiches, chips, cookies, and beverages)

12:00 - 12:15 How Evanston Beat The Ban
Jonathan Perman, Evanston Chamber of Commerce

12:15 - 12:30 Feedback & Discussion of Strategy

12:30 - 12:45 TBA (Illinois Restaurant Association)

12:45 - 1:00 Feedback & Discussion of Tactics

1:00 - 1:30 Discussion of Next Steps






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