Bills to eliminate 'tampon tax' pass in Illinois, New York

Bills to eliminate 'tampon tax' pass in Illinois, New York

Bills that would eliminate so-called tampon taxes have passed in Illinois and New York.

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Illinois state lawmakers Tuesday approved a bill that would exempt feminine hygiene products from the state's sales tax, The Associated Press reported. The measure now awaits the signature of Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner.

A similar bill passed in New York last week.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, said in a statement that he will sign the measure because "repealing this regressive and unfair tax on women is a matter of social and economic justice."

The tampon tax issue has sparked national attention in the past several months, with politicians as high up as President Obama weighing in.

Obama said in January that it was "sensible" for women to fight to eliminate tampon taxes and that taxes may have been imposed on the products in the first place because “men were making the laws when those tax[es] were passed.”

While most states tax feminine hygiene products, several other states already either exempt tampons from their sales taxes or do not have statewide sales taxes at all.