Opponents of a workplace smoking ban in New Jersey gained allies who were sure to attract a lot of attention: Exotic dancers.
A local radio station sponsored the 100-Stripper March to urge Governor Codey to veto the smoking ban, but the rally failed on two counts, the Asbury Park Press reports.
The newspaper reports that only about 50 exotic dancers participated in the rally in front of the Statehouse. And, Codey signed the New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act into law despite the protest, which attracted about 700 people.
Codey, who signed the legislation as one of his last actions as governor, cracked jokes about the protest, according to the newspaper.
"I can't bare to go," Codey said. "If, in the end, the only people against me are the strippers, my wife's got to be proud of me."
He says the law, which applies to restaurants and bars but exempts casino floors, will protect workers and customers from second-hand smoke.
The exotic dancers argue that the smoking ban will hurt business.
"They (state government) should be worrying about the drug dealers in the streets," says Destiny Gaindin, 28, of Trenton .
Source: Asbury Park Press