Smoke on your pipe, and put that in

Last Cigarette image by Flickr user justj0000lie

"My Last Cigarette" by Flickr user justj0000lie

Wow, Virginia.  I never thought I’d see the day.  The legislature a)actually stopped arguing long enough to pass a bill and b) it was a smoking ban!

The new law was passed Thursday by surprisingly wide margins and, once signed by Governor Tim Kaine, will take effect December 1.  Bars and restaurants will no longer be able to allow smoking, unless they are “private clubs” or construct separately-ventilated enclosed rooms for smokers.  Some outdoor patios will also be smoker-friendly.

Smoking bans have been rejected numerous times over the past ten years or so by the state legislature.  But now Virginia, home of Philip Morris (Marlboro Country!), where tobacco leaves are painted on the state Capitol and the DMV offers tobacco heritage license plates, will be the 25th state (including the District) to enact a ban in bars and restaurants.

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