Senator Bi-Partisan in Gambling Debate
Republican Sen. George Voinovich helped persuade Ted Strickland, the Democratic nominee for governor, to oppose any proposal to introduce slot machines that are similiar to casino gambling in Ohio through an issue on the November ballot. Voinovich, who thinks gambling is a powerful addiction and can be destructive to families, has opposed any expansion beyond current law since a casino issue was on the ballot in 1990.
Gov. Strickland has not only vowed to veto a proposed bill to allow electronic betting on archived races at horsetracks, he has now joined with Attorney General Marc Dann to call for a ban on cash prizes from table-top gaming devices that are appearing in bars and restaurants all over the state. Dann's support for a ban has developed out of his frustration with his earlier efforts to enforce the existing legal distinction between outlawed games of chance and permissible games of skill.
Columbus — Gov. Ted Strickland on Wednesday slammed the latest plan to bring full-scale casinos to Ohio, saying gambling supporters need to stop selling their proposal as a potential life-saver for the state's drooping economy.
"Every proposal that has been brought forth I think has been designed to enrich the promoters and give a modest or, even in some cases, a meager share of resources to the state or individual localities," Strickland told The Plain Dealer on Wednesday.
Gov. Ted Strickland rolled out a surprise plan today that would add electronic slots at the seven Ohio horse racetracks to generate revenue designed to help fill a $3.2 billion budget hole.
See also the Cleveland Leader and Kevin Holtsberry's Ohio Politics Online: the latter thinks that this is "a last ditch effort to avoid tax increases." Which seems fair enough, as far as it goes, but I don't know whether it really hammers home the detail that Strickland's numbers have dropped lately, that Ohio's unemployment rate has increased lately, and that the Ohio GOP is prepared to highlight not only the state's heightened economic woes, but also Strickland's refusal to take any responsibility for it...
PS: Go Kasich.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.