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Gambling Interests Lose Big on Election Day

by Les

Thanks to concerned citizens from all political persuasions, one of the biggest losers on Election Day was America's gambling interests. The voting results show that in the face of almost limitless spending by big gambling operators, more and more citizens understand that commercial gambling has been a spectacular failure and it does not improve people's lives: 1) New Jersey voters crushed a high profile ballot question to expand casinos into the northern region of the state by a 79% to 21% margin according to reports late Tuesday night. 2) In Massachusetts, voters soundly defeated a ballot question to bring a slot machine parlor into Greater Boston by a 60.8% - 39.2% margin. A special thanks to those who led the opposition effort, especially Celeste Meyers and her team who spent almost no money but sacrificed their time and talents for this just cause. 3) In another high profile predatory gambling fight, citizens of Tiverton, Rhode Island can declare victory after overcoming more than $4.6 million of campaign spending by a gambling operator trying to force a casino into their town. Citizens opposing the casino spent no money yet achieved a virtual 50%-50% tie on the ballot question. After spending millions of dollars in what may have been the most lopsided campaign in the country, only the willfully ignorant would conclude the community "wants" a casino. 4) The State of Arkansas squashed a proposed ballot question to push casinos into the state. The Arkansas Supreme Court, in language that rings true in every state where predatory gambling has been thrusted into the lives of everyday people, ruled that the ballot question title “does not honestly and accurately reflect what is contained in the proposed amendment. The voters are entitled to a ballot title that is honest, impartial, and intelligible and will give them a fair understanding of the issues presented." The reason why this political practice is used repeatedly by gambling interests is because when a business is dishonest, the people who benefit from it need to promote it dishonestly. The American Gambling Association did a big public relations campaign in 2016 to create the illusion that "gaming votes." As these election cycle results show, "gaming" doesn't vote. They attempt to buy the vote. And citizens still stand strong against them because predatory gambling does not improve people's lives.

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