BOSTON – Groups on both side of the casino repeal measure set by the Supreme Judicial Court’s on the November ballot started campaigns this week.
In June, the SJC decided to put the fate of the 2011 expanded gambling law which allowed three regional resort casinos and one slot parlor on the November ballot.
“We conclude that the Legislature and, through initiative, the voters of Massachusetts may choose to abolish casino and slot parlor gambling and pari-mutuel wagering on simulcast greyhound racing, and doing so would not constitute a taking of property without compensation,” told Justice Ralph D. Gants.
A pro-casino group funded by gambling giants MGM Resorts International, MGM Resorts International, Mohegan Sun and Penn National Gaming called Committee to Protect Massachusetts Jobs told they expect to launch their extensive campaign after three weeks of planning.
Between now and Election Day of November 4, we will be engaging voters across the Commonwealth about the benefits that gaming will bring to Massachusetts,” said Wooten Johnson, Campaign Manager for Vote No on Question 3.
According to Johnson, their campaign will create 10,000 new jobs and 6,500 construction jobs; ensure that the communities that already voted to host a casino can get the jobs, business, and revenue they voted for; and put an end to shipping the residents’ hard-earned money and tax dollars out of state to Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Maine.
On the other hand, Stephen Eiseleof the Repeal the Casino Deal, a statewide organization opposing casino and slots said they will reach out to undecided voters who have not yet voted on the local casino plans.
Eisele also mentioned two dozen volunteers canvassed in the communities of Winthrop, Bourne, Lexington, East Longmeadow and Ludlow while another dozen volunteers engaged in phone banking in Springfield and East Boston.
“In ruling to allow the referendum, the justices have upheld the standards of the initiative petition law, a law that defines the very core of American democracy, the citizens’ right to vote on matters of substantial importance to the entire population,” said Repeal the Casino Deal attorney Thomas O. Bean.