Local lawmaker Duncan Hunter vapes during hearing

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WASHINGTON -- Rep. Duncan Hunter wasn't blowing "smoke" when he made his case against an amendment to ban vaping on planes.

Actually, it was something more like water vapor.

A vocal supporter of e-cigarettes, Hunter, who represents California's 50th District in San Diego County, proudly declared, "Yes, I vape," in an op-ed last year.

On Thursday, he opened his argument to allow the practice on flights by inhaling a load of e-juices.

"So this is called a vaporizer," Hunter said as his neighbor tried (literally) to clear the air. "There's no combustion, there are no carcinogens ... there is no burning, there is nothing noxious about this whatsoever."

The gesture drew some snickers from the gallery, but failed to win the support of Hunter's colleagues on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, which was marking up its Aviation Innovation, Reform, and Reauthorization (AIRR) Act.

Vaping, which is currently forbidden by most major airlines anyway, looks set for a federal restriction.