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Georgian GOP against Casino Legalisation
- October 9, 2017 By Oliver Young -
Georgia is one of the US states where there have been serious initiatives to legalise casino gambling. One of the State Senators put forward a legalisation proposal earlier this year. It seemed that the Senator’s attempt might just be successful, at one point it was even suggested that the Governor might support the idea.
And while many gambling legalisation supporters were pretty exciting and eager to finally see a legalisation proposal at the highest legislative level, it seems that there is a lot more to be done in order to secure sufficient political backing and support for their idea. It seems that many Georgian Republicans, including some of the most influential ones don’t feel that legalising gambling is a good idea, even if it brings more money in the state budget.
Multiple Legalisation Attempts Have Failed
Many hoped that this year’s Gubernatorial Election will be the perfect time to bring the casino legalisation issue in the spotlight, but it seems that the most serious contenders for the GOP nomination are against casino legalisation. And considering the fact that Republicans are likely to win in Georgia, that’s clearly bad news for all supporters of casino legalisation.
So far, we know that the Governor Casey Cagle, Michael Williams who is a Senator, Secretary of State Brian Kemp and former Senator Hunter Hill are the leading the race for the GOP gubernatorial candidates in Georgia. They were all given a chance to explain and clarify their views on numerous matters and all of them pledged not to allow any changes in the state Constitution which would allow the establishment of casinos on Georgian territory.
Pushes for casino legalisation in Georgia didn’t start this year, there were few previous attempts, all unsuccessful. The last attempt didn’t get enough support and it seems that all subsequent attempts might have the same outcome, especially since the Republicans are so staunchly against it.
Georgia Gambling Revenue Would Reach up to $600 Million
All previous legalisation proposals have been pretty similar, supporters of casino legalisation aim to introduce an amendment to the Constitution that would annul the ban of the establishment of casinos. The primary objective is to pass a legal solution that would allow the construction of two resorts in two different areas of the state.
All proposals saw Atlanta as a spot for one of the two casino complexes, the larger one. The resort would’ve cost at least $2 billion and both resorts would have to pay at least 20% of their revenues. Under the proposal, a fraction of the collected tax should’ve been used to sponsor the special HOPE scholarship programme which funds the education of numerous Georgian Students.
In August this year Republican Members of the State Committee voted for a resolution that was aimed to prevent the possibility of legalisation on casinos and sports betting, particularly horse racing. According to Georgian Republicans the legalisation of casinos in the state could lead to a growing number of divorces per capita. The crime rates might also grow, argue members of the GOP in Georgia.
The expected gaming revenue could exceed $600 million. It appears that the Republican Party is willing to give up on an amount that high in order to maintain their position on casino gambling.