I rarely agree with Sen. Hatch anymore. I don't agree with the stands he has taken concerning protecting the flag and taxing tobacco to provide health insurance for children.

However, I have to side with him regarding the tobacco legislation. The politicians who abandoned the original, voluntary agreement with the tobacco industry and sought to impose an illegal and unconstitutional set of laws and regulations on that industry were grandstanding in an election year. Had that passed, it would have fallen apart as soon as the industry's lawyers got the case into court.As for the probability that Hatch took campaign funds from the tobacco industry in return for fighting that legislation: If he did, I've no doubt our state's two major newspapers would discover it in the Federal Election Commission reports and would report it. Only a fool would take such contributions for opposing that bill, and whatever else Hatch may be, he is no fool.

Ronald D. Hathcock