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JIM SMITH, San Clemente

Since Councilmember Laura Ferguson is so active in our current city council election, I have a couple of observations on her credibility.

Ms. Ferguson cast the only “no” vote when the council voted, 3-1, on an ordinance requiring new smoke and tobacco shops to be 500 feet from schools or parks. Her vote’s in line with her recent pro-business comment about not creating unnecessary burdens for business. I guess that includes “big tobacco and vaping.”

However, Ferguson also says she wants to keep our town safe and listen to public concerns. Well, consider this concern from the Center for Disease Control: “If cigarette smoking continues at the current rate among youth in this country, 5.6 million of today’s Americans younger than 18 will die early from a smoking-related illness. That’s about 1 of every 13 Americans aged 17 years or younger who are alive today.”

Every San Clemente kid on a trike, bike or scooter wears a helmet, but don’t mess with “big tobacco and vaping”?

Candidate Gene James lists Ferguson as a big supporter. With her duplicity and his “bull-in-a-china shop” approach, they’re a perfect match. I’ll be voting for Jackson Hinkle.

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