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  Tobacco health labels unconstitutional: U.S. judge
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ContributorHomegrown Democrat 
Last EditedHomegrown Democrat  Mar 01, 2012 03:20am
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CategoryLegal Ruling
AuthorJeremy Pelofsky
MediaNews Service - Reuters
News DateThursday, March 1, 2012 12:25:00 AM UTC0:0
Description(Reuters) - A U.S. judge sided with tobacco companies on Wednesday, ruling that regulations requiring large graphic health warnings on cigarette packaging and advertising violate free-speech rights under the U.S. Constitution.

Cigarette makers challenged the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's rule requiring companies to label tobacco products with images of rotting teeth, diseased lungs and other images intended to illustrate the dangers of smoking.

"The government has failed to carry both its burden of demonstrating a compelling interest and its burden of demonstrating that the rule is narrowly tailored to achieve a constitutionally permissible form of compelled commercial speech," U.S. District Judge Richard Leon said in the ruling.
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