09 April 1998
Clinton calms farmers on tobacco deal
US President Bill Clinton embarked on intense lobbying of tobacco growing states after the collapse of the multibillion dollar deal to settle lawsuits between tobacco companies and 40 states.
But he also restated to growers the case for regulating the industry. He said they would be compensated by the federal government and helped where necessary to switch to other crops.
The tobacco industry would have paid $368.5bn (£223bn) to states as well as a fund for treatment costs, under the terms of the original June settlement. This settlement also granted the companies legal protection, including immunity from mass lawsuits and punitive damages for past smokers.
But in the Bill put to the Senate, the cost would rise to over $500bn and it would not have provided immunity.