Up In Smoke

The tobacco bill almost made it until the Republicans decided to blow it off

Like any smoky gentlemen's club, the U.S. Senate includes some members the others wish had never got in. Too pushy. Always wanting to change things, even bedrock traditions like due respect for the marriage of money and power. So when the deeply scarred, highly disruptive Republican John McCain stood on the Senate floor last Wednesday, stared down his colleagues and accused them of honoring their debts to Big Tobacco over their obligations to "those who can't care for themselves in this society, and that includes our children," the few G.O.P. statesmen present sat silent while Democrats across the aisle stood and...

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