R.J. Reynolds launched the brand in February. It says the cigarettes are aimed at adult female smokers, a market segment where Camel has performed poorly.
But anti-smoking groups and others have argued that the product - from its name, which recalls an upscale perfume, to the packaging to the ads - appears designed to lure teens or young women. The cigarettes come in black boxes with a border of teal or fuchsia. They're advertised in women's magazines under the slogan "Light and Luscious," on textured paper adorned with images of red roses and lace.
"Camel No. 9 cigarettes are being advertised to appeal to teenage girls' desire to be 'chic' and 'cosmopolitan' ... Teenage girls are especially vulnerable to this kind of advertising pitch," said Friday's letter from the five Democrats to FTC Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras.
"We believe it is time for the FTC to step in to protect our nation's teenagers from cigarettes, a product that kills one-third of its users."
The letter, which came a day after The Associated Press wrote about criticism of the ads, was e-mailed to the AP by the office of Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, who initiated it. It was also signed by Sens. Tom Harkin of Iowa, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts and Illinois' Dick Durbin, according to Lautenberg's office.
The debate over the Camel campaign comes amid a renewed push for federal regulation of tobacco. A bipartisan group of lawmakers has reintroduced legislation that would give the Food and Drug Administration the authority over tobacco products that it has over many other consumer products.
Ok, so they want to keep kids from smoking? Great!
Doesn't anyone with the I.Q. greater than a clam KNOW that cigarettes are bad for you? ...Ooops, obviously not the juries that award millions to people who started smoking AFTER the warnings were all over the place.
So they're going to do exactly what to change a teens indestructible, and shortsighted outlook on life?
In Texas you have to LOOK 27 before they stop carding you for smokes. There are scary warnings all over the
How are these geniuses going to stop kids from smoking.
Guess what you over-educated moral dictators, they're KIDS. As long as the cool kids do it, it'll BE cool. There's nothing you can do to stop it.
Stolen from Steel.