You may remember that Mark Drakeford considers e-cigs to 'renormalise' smoking and wants them banned in public places (in itself showing the smoking ban up to be not about tackling passive smoke as his ilk always claim). However, his subsequent desperate propaganda offensive against the understandable backlash has turned out to be as inept and misinformed as the proposal itself.
His blathering performance in May tried to 'prove' that e-cigs were a gateway into smoking by quoting shonky research from France. It was just 24 hours later that real life evidence emerged showing an astonishing and unprecedented reduction in smoking amongst French youths thanks to e-cigs.
Unsurprisingly, his other Earth-shattering revelation to convince fellow politicians that e-cigs are "designed as a product for experimentation and initiation into cigarette use" (yes, those are his exact words) has now also been embarrassingly and ruthlessly exposed as cockwaffle.
"In the United States, scientists have found that nearly two-thirds of young people who have used e-cigarettes have never been established smokers"So said Drakeford in May. Well, if this was a ploy to turn kids into smokers, it has failed spectacularly, according to the US state's Center for Disease Control.
Cigarette smoking among U.S. high school students at lowest level in 22 years
As the ACSH reports, this is a very significant decline.
We should also note that the teen smoking rates were quite stagnant from 2003’s 22 percent until 2011’s 18 percent: barely a decline at all. Now, all of a sudden, a 2.4 percent fall over 2 years, a decline not seen since 2001-2003.Why, oh why, is the Welsh Health Minister so opposed to seeing the same dramatic decline in smoking prevalence amongst young people in Wales?
Just to recap, here's what Drakeford said about e-cig evidence last month.
"Do we want our successors to look back at the debates we are holding today and shake their heads at our inability to see where the evidence was leading"Well, sunshine, the evidence is all dramatically leading in one very distinct direction, while you seem to lack any ability to notice it.
There's only one person that Welsh history will record as being a political clown when it comes to e-cigs, and that's Mark Drakeford.