(WASHINGTON) -- Around this time last year, President Obama quit smoking -- a move that was, according to a friend of President Obama, directly tied to the passage of the healthcare bill.
The friend tells ABC News that during the myriad struggles to pass the controversial health care legislation, President Obama made a commitment to himself that “if he got it done he'd stop.”
President Obama signed the health care bill into law on March 23, 2010. His attempt to quit cigarettes “started in the couple of weeks after,” the friend said.
The president has been using nicotine gum and celery sticks to help him kick the habit.
In February, first lady Michelle Obama offered another motivation for the president’s latest attempt to quit, saying her husband wanted to be able to look his daughters Malia and Sasha in the eye and tell them honestly he doesn’t smoke.
Another less discussed nudge for the president towards a cigarette-free existence: President Obama’s White House trip director and golf pal Marvin Nicholson, from whom it has been said the president would occasionally bum smokes, quit smoking a few weeks before the president did.
Nicholson, who uses the anti-cigarette prescription drug Chantix, is still cigarette-free.
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