Welcome to the Department of Justice, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller

For immediate release -- Wednesday, September 22, 1999.
Contact Bob Brammer - 515-281-6699

Miller Welcomes U.S. Tobacco Lawsuit

"This can be a big step for taxpayers and for justice," Miller says.

DES MOINES-- Attorney General Tom Miller said he welcomes the massive lawsuit filed today by the United States against the tobacco industry.

"This is very important for taxpayers, because the federal government pays more than $20 billion a year for smoking-related health expenditures," Miller said.

"And it's important for justice," he said. "It seeks to put responsibility where it belongs. I support the basic allegation of the lawsuit -- that the tobacco companies have conspired since at least the 1950s to defraud and mislead the American public and conceal information about the effects of smoking."

Miller said the federal lawsuit does not affect the outcome of Iowa's lawsuit, which was filed in 1996 and settled late last year with tobacco industry payments to Iowa totaling $1.9 billion scheduled for the next 25 years.

The U.S. suit seeks to recover costs borne by the federal government in health claims paid to veterans, military personnel, federal employees, elderly Americans through Medicare, and other costs.

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