Oz Prime Minister to lose smokers' votes over hike in cigarette prices

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Sydney, May 1 (ANI): Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's intentions might be noble, but he is facing the ire of the Australian working class following a whopping 25 percent increase in excise tax on tobacco.

Rudd, who has dedicatedly waged war against tobacco, is fast losing popularity for his vigourous anti-tobacco campaign.

Many vented their anger with almost 70 per cent of smokers responding to a Daily Telegraph online poll, confirming the tax would cost Rudd their vote.

However, Rudd's concern is not without reason. The numbers speak for themselves.

According to The Daily Telegraph, a 2005 survey found smoking was significantly higher among people who worked in manual labour or factories, where almost 40 per cent of labourers smoked, leading to a higher mortality rate amongst them.

Labor strategists are aware of the negative impact such a move will have on the Labor voters but feel that others who identify with the moral certitude of this policy will nullify the effects. (ANI)

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