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Casino Gambling Round III

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Ohio Roundtable: The Public Square - Casino Gambling Round III

Casino Gambling Round III

Just when you thought it was safe to talk about real education reform – they’re back – the casino people that is.

The direction is toward casino gambling. The Ohio General Assembly is now considering two major gambling measures that would help open casinos in this state. The first is the Governor’s proposal to move Ohio into partnership with the multi-state Powerball Lottery. The second is changing our laws to permit video slot machines in all of Ohio’s racetracks.

Both ideas are being sold as a way to raise money for the state and in particular to help education. Both ideas have strong lobbying allies in the gambling industry. Both ideas will take Ohio two big steps in the direction of legalized casinos throughout the state – perhaps in your backyard.

The casino industry wrote the book on the political strategy known as “incrementalism”. Others call it “baby-stepping”. They soften up voters with the super-lottery. Then they put in the instant games. Then they bring in the Powerball connection. Then they move in the video slots in racetracks. And finally—when so many people are hooked or politically compromised, or financially dependent – they bring in the casinos.

Its all part of one of the biggest scams in history – and its playing out right now at your state capitol. Are you ready to see Ohio move closer to casino gambling? Or are you one of the vast majority of citizens that voted against casinos in 1990 and 1996?

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