Congress raises legal age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21; measure awaits president's signature

Some big non-impeachment news came out of Washington D.C. Thursday. Congress raised the legal age across the country to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21.

The measure, championed by Sen. Mitch McConnell, passed as part of a $1.4 trillion spending package.

With the president's signature, it will be illegal for anyone under 21 years of age to purchase vape products and e-cigarettes, as well as more traditional tobacco products. The measure came amid nationwide concern about increasing nicotine use among young people and the possible health risks of electronic cigarette products.

The first spending package covers eight appropriations bills, including domestic spending, and passed in a 71-23 vote. It will head to President Donald Trump's desk for his signature. He will need to sign by Friday to avoid another government shutdown.

Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby put out the following statement:

"This package of appropriations bills includes resources for critical domestic priorities that our entire nation will benefit from receiving. I am proud to have supported these bills and pleased that, as a result of our bipartisan efforts, we were able to come to an agreement and pass them ahead of our funding deadline. Thank you to my colleagues on both sides of the aisle. I look forward to President Trump signing this legislation into law."

Votes on the second spending package are expected late Thursday.
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