D.C.

D.C. councilmembers still support super-sized soda ban

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Super-sized sodas, sweet teas and other sugary drinks were spared the axe in New York City Monday thanks to a judge's ruling. But the soda ban set back in NYC isn't stopping some local lawmakers from supporting a similar size ban in Washington, D.C.

The over sized sodas at Ben's Chili Bowl on U Street are almost as popular as the loaded hot dogs and fries themselves.

"Drink some now, save some for later," said one customer.

Maurice Kauffman, the manager of Ben's Chili Bowl, added, "Chili is spicy. They need all the Pepsi they can get."

What they get, according to many health experts, is up to 65 grams of sugar in every 20 ounces of soda.

That's why, despite the delay with New York City's efforts to outlaw super-sized drinks, some D.C. councilmembers are hoping to see a similar ban in the district. The ban would prohibit the sale of drinks over 16 ounces in restaurants and convenience stores.

Councilman David Grosso said, "These are huge drinks, you know. It's not like 12 ounces and 16, it's like 24, 32 ounces...it's a lot a sugar, and it's just not good for you..."

But many soda drinkers are well aware of the health risks.

"I like soda, but I don't like drink it all the time. I would think it would affect sports venues more so...," D.C. resident Kierra Graham said.

Harcum added, "From a business point of view, it will hurt."

At least three councilmembers have expressed support for a ban on big drinks. But with the strong opposition from the soda lobby and local businesses, they know they're in for a tough fight.

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