Its author Rep. Karen Peterson pulled out all the stops, joined in by several supporters, who perpetuated myths if not misleading information. These have been discussed elsewhere, but to summarize briefly:
Throughout it all, supporters tried to dismiss the blatant fact of what the bill was, a tax increase. State Rep. Joe Lopinto, the only one who spoke against the bill, did not let them get away with that, despite their claims that “anti-tax” rhetoric did not have a place in the discussion. He correctly pointed out that the question was whether this tax increase was justified, and as the above arguments show, it clearly was not.
Whether the 55 opponents accessed any, some, or all of the above in their decisions to oppose the bill makes no difference as to the outcome, a victory for those who believe government should live within it means and that spending priorities can be altered with no significant decrease in quality of services provided. For this, regardless of whether somebody uses tobacco, this bill’s defeat was a triumph for Louisiana’s people.