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Published: Tuesday, 12/11/2007

Michigan Senate deals blow to smoking ban in bars, restaurants


LANSING, Mich. Efforts to ban smoking in Michigan bars, restaurants and other workplaces have hit a road block in the state Senate.

Republicans sent the smoking ban measure to a committee where many bills go to die. Democrats tried to steer it to the health policy committee instead because the committee s Republican chairman supports the ban.

Democrats on Tuesday accused the GOP majority of ignoring a U.S. surgeon general report that says breathing any amount of secondhand smoke harms nonsmokers.

Republican Majority Leader Mike Bishop says workplaces should be free to decide whether to allow smoking or not, and government shouldn t interfere with private businesses such as restaurants and bars.

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