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In recent years, the billionaire-politician-philanthropist has used his largesse to bend regulators in the United States and elsewhere to his will in service of his social agenda, which includes eradicating smoking and battling climate change.

Earlier this year, the government of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte came under intense fire for denying tobacco companies access to COVID-19 vaccines imported by the government in partnership with the private sector for employee vaccination programs. The Duterte administration’s decision was based on a 10-year-old policy forbidding government officials from interacting with the tobacco industry. [...]