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Argued December 14, 2000

OPINION OF THE COURT

This is an appeal from the dismissal under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) of claims brought under the Sherman Antitrust Act attacking the multi-billion dollar national tobacco settlement. Endeavoring to recoup billions of dollars in public health care costs and to reduce cigarette smoking, several states brought suit against the leading United States tobacco manufacturers. In view of the magnitude of potential liability and the prospect of multiple actions, the parties asked Congress to resolve the suits through a national legislative remedy. After congressional efforts stalled, forty-six states forged a settlement with the tobacco manufacturers known as the Multistate Settlement Agreement. Plaintiffs, who are cigarette wholesalers, challenge the Multistate Settlement Agreement as a violation of � 1 and � 2 of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

 
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