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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Vaping is at the center of a bipartisan bill co-sponsored by Sen. Todd Young. 

The bill would raise the legal age to buy tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and liquid, to 21-years-old. Similar legislation is also being considered in the U.S. House.

“The nationwide epidemic of tobacco and electronic cigarette use among high school and middle school students can no longer be ignored,” said Sen. Young. “Roughly 95-percent of adult smokers began smoking before the age of 21.”

Young said those numbers include those who choose vaping over traditional smoking. He also said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that smoking-related illness in the United States costs more than $300 billion a year. 

“More must be done at the federal level to prevent future smokers from starting,” Young added. “Experts consistently recommend raising the tobacco age as a top priority to protect our kids and reduce health care costs.” 

Fellow Republican Sen. Mitt Romney along with Democrats Brian Schatz and Dick Durbin are behind the bill. 

(PHOTO: Zach Gibson/Getty Images)