The Supreme Court on Monday denied a request made by a group of major tobacco companies to block California’s recently passed ban on flavored tobacco products, allowing for a lower court’s decision permitting the ban to stand.
Major tobacco companies such as R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, the Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company and Modoral Brands Inc. submitted a request for an injunction to the court last month, asking that the justices consider whether California had the authority to instate the ban.
Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, who handles emergency matters arising from the 9th Circuit, denied the request in a response on Monday, indicating that it had been referred to the full court. No dissents from any other justices were noted.
Prior to this denial from the Supreme Court, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals had rejected a similar request from the tobacco companies, finding that states retained the ability to regulate tobacco products despite federal laws giving regulatory powers to the Food and Drug Administration.
In November, more than 60 percent of California voters chose “Yes” on a ballot measure, backed by tobacco companies, asking if the law should be upheld banning nontobacco flavors such as vanilla, fruit and mint.
The California state legislature had passed a bill in 2020 that banned most flavored tobacco products. However, because the law qualified for referendum, it was put on hold pending the statewide vote.
The law will take effect when the state certifies election results later this month.