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Coca-Cola Lobbyists Spend Millions to Defeat Soda Taxes

Last month, Hawaii lawmakers killed a proposed tax that would have added 17 cents to a single-serve bottle of soda. It was the second failed attempt, even though Governor Neil Abercrombie had pushed the proposed levy.

Like many advocates of a sugary beverage tax, Abercrombie faced a well-funded lobbying campaign from soda makers opposed to such efforts, which are designed to stem rising rates of obesity. Since the beginning of 2009, PepsiCo Inc., Coca-Cola Co. and the American Beverage Association have spent as much as $70 million on lobbying and issue ads, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a proponent of soda taxes.