DENVER - Colorado lawmakers have decided not to raise the tobacco age from 18 to 21.
The House Finance Committee rejected the proposal on Wednesday. It failed by a single vote. Utah's Legislature recently rejected a bill to raise the smoking age there.
The proposal was inspired by new research on how many smokers start the habit as teenagers. Nearly all regular tobacco users first experience the drug before graduating from high school graduation, according to a report from the U.S. surgeon general.
"This finding suggests that if adolescents can be kept tobacco-free, most will never start using tobacco," the report states.
Some cities already have 21-to-smoke laws, but Colorado's would have been the first statewide law if it was approved.
Opponents said 18-year-olds are adults and should be trusted to make their own decisions on tobacco.