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Iowa Goes Smoke-Free

Publication Date: 7/1/2008
  • Publication:WHO-TV, IA

The state of Iowa is now smoke-free. A statewide smoking ban following a months-long battle between lawmakers at the statehouse this spring, extinguishes cigarettes in restaurants and bars.

Smoking is still allowed on the gaming floor of casinos as well as the Iowa Veterans Home. As the clock ran down to midnight June 30th, emotions ran high.

Blues on Grand in downtown Des Moines isn't usually open on Monday nights, but at 9:00 Monday, patrons enjoyed one last cigarette as they raised the flag of the former Soviet Union and played the Soviet anthem. The bar's owner says it's in protest of the ban, which he says, takes away an adult's right to smoke.

Meanwhile members of the Central Iowa Tobacco Free Partnership put "thank you" signs in the yards of lawmakers who voted for the ban. "Central Iowa, the four counties -- we've got people out putting up signs. We had eighteen legislators who voted in favor of this and we just wanted to thank them," said Lorene Mein of the partnership.