Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will introduce legislation to raise the federal minimum age to buy tobacco to 21 from 18, he announced Thursday.
McConnell will introduce the legislation, called the McConnell bill, in May, he said. The bill will cover all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes. McConnell’s backing marks the strongest support yet in Congress for what’s been dubbed “T21.”
“For some time, I’ve been hearing from the parents who are seeing an unprecedented spike in vaping among their teenage children,” McConnell said in a statement. “In addition, we all know people who started smoking at a young age and who struggled to quit as adults. Unfortunately it’s reaching epidemic levels around the country.”