Nebraska: opponents campaign against casino legalisation

Those against casinos believe they will fuel social problems such as gambling addiction.
Those against casinos believe they will fuel social problems such as gambling addiction.

Voters are to decide on November 3 whether to approve the legalisation of casinos at state-licensed racetracks.

US.- A group of high-profile names in Nebraskan politics have urged voters to reject the legalisation of casinos in the state.

Opponents including the Republican governor Pete Ricketts and former Governor Kay Orr argued that casinos would cause social problems that would outweigh the benefits of the revenue they would generate.

Ricketts said: “We already fight gambling addition here in our state. This will make it so much worse.”

He cited high-profile cases such as a Lincoln pharmacist who defrauded the Medicaid system out of $14.4m for gambling money.

Another key contrarian is Tom Osborne, former congressman and Husker football coach, and honorary chairman of Gambling with the Good Life.

He said the legalisation of gambling would damage people’s quality of life and that those most affected “will be the family, spouses and children of those who have a gambling problem.”

Other politicians in the state, such as Republican legislative candidate Janet Palmtag, endorse casino gambling as a way to fund property tax relief and create jobs.

Citizens decide on November 3 whether to allow casinos in Omaha, Lincoln, Grand Island, Columbus and South Sioux City.

The neighbouring state of Iowa has legal casinos which are used by Nebraskan residents.