As youth vaping rates surged, a powerful state lawmaker repeatedly held up anti-vaping laws while accepting nearly $20,000 in campaign contributions from tobacco companies and lobbyists.

Sylvia Luke, who represents the Honolulu neighborhoods of Makiki, Nuuanu, and Punchbowl in the state House of Representatives, was identified to HPR by multiple independent sources as a primary reason that legislation aimed at curbing the underage use of electronic cigarettes and vape devices has failed in recent years.

Analysis of legislative records show a clear trend: for years Luke opposed efforts to restrict illegal sales, ban flavors, and impose penalties on unlawful sellers, instead favoring punitive measures for underage users of e-cigarettes.

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Ryan Finnerty – October 29, 2020.

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