- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 18, 2014

SEATTLE (AP) - A group proposing a cigarette tax to fund cancer research is putting off plans for an initiative campaign this year in Washington.

Unite to Fight Cancer says in a statement Wednesday it ran out of time to raise the amount of money needed for a statewide campaign against expected opposition from tobacco companies.

The group says it will consider introducing the initiative in the future. In the meantime it will work with the governor and Legislature on increasing funding for cancer research, prevention and care.

Backers of Unite to Fight Cancer include The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Seattle Children’s Hospital.

Washington’s current tax of $3.03 per pack is already one of the highest in the nation.

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