Strong majority against raising legal smoking age in NH - 338 participants

Mar 15, 2016

Recently, California raised the legal age for purchasing and using tobacco and e-cigarettes from 18 to 21. Currently, there are no bills in the New Hampshire Legislature that propose changing the legal smoking age from 18. Read more about this issue. On March 15, the LFDA decided to put the issue to its Facebook members, posting the question, “Should New Hampshire raise the legal smoking age to 21?”

“Should New Hampshire raise the legal smoking age to 21?”

Results: Yes or No Respondents

Legal Smoking Age NH Citizen Voices Chart

Participation: 338 participants gave 906 responses

A total of 78% of those participating gave a 'yes or no' response to the question. The remaining 22% of participants engaged in the discussion but did not give a yes or no response. In total, the LFDA received 906 responses from 338 individuals. (Click here for details on our methodology.)

What Participants Said:

No: The majority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 82%, opposed raising the legal smoking age in NH.

  • “This rule would be unenforceable and would create unnecessary work for police and courts.”
  • “If children or young adults want to drink or smoke they will unfortunately get the alcohol or cigarettes somehow. All adults can do is educate and lead by example and ultimately hope for the best.”
  • “Creative marketing has been much more effective than trying to control people via regulations.”

Yes: A minority, at 18% of ‘yes or no’ respondents, were in favor of NH raising the legal smoking age in NH.

  • "An 18-year-old's brain is not finished developing and not always capable of making rational decisions.”
  • “I am smart enough to realize it won't stop underage smoking but it might at least slow down the teenagers from picking up a very deadly habit.”
  • “Smoking tobacco costs society more lives and treasure than the wealth it creates.”

Other: As noted above, 22% of those participating did not give a yes or no response, instead addressing their comments to related questions and issues. These included:

  • Discussing alternative solutions to addressing smoking in general: “I think that smoking should be banned or else pay a differential on your insurance policies. I should not be held liable for your addictions.”
  • Broadening the issue to include drinking: “Either lower the drinking age to 18 or raise the enlistment and voting age to 21.  Seems pretty stupid that you can point a gun at our enemies or at your fellow countrymen but can't have a beer.”
  • Questioning the importance of the issue: “Is this what we are so concerned about? Did you forget that people are dying of opiates faster than you die from cigarettes?”

*Editor selection of actual participant quotes. 

Click here to read the full Facebook discussion of this question. 

Know someone who would be interested in these results? Forward them the summary version of this report. 

Should NH raise the legal smoking age? Leave a comment and have your say! 

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