FACT: Pennsylvania already takes more money from citizens through casino gambling than any other state – even Nevada, with its Mecca, Las Vegas.
There, at least, a substantial percentage of the money-losers at casinos traveled there for that purpose. It’s called “destination gambling.” Same with Atlantic City.
But here in Pennsylvania, the empty wallets and pocketbooks leaving the slots and table games at our casinos typically belong to our fellow citizens. And that means more addicted Pennsylvanians, more hungry children, and fewer dollars available to spend on necessities, and less disposable income that truly fuels our economy. And it means expanded social welfare programs needed to deal with the fallout.
If that isn’t bad enough, right now some of Pennsylvania’s State Senators and Representatives (and Gov. Wolf) are looking to pay for expanded government spending in this year’s proposed budget by a reckless, massive increase in gambling in both type and location.
Instead of casino gambling being limited to a discrete number of locations (still way more than almost anywhere else), the proposal being pushed in the Capitol in Harrisburg would then place highly addictive video gambling terminals in neighborhoods all across our state (estimated at more than 10,000 locations).
But wait, there’s more – it would also legalize online, internet gambling (available on virtually every smartphone and computer). This too, is highly addictive, and especially so to younger Pennsylvanians. And the proposal would also authorize daily fantasy sports betting and online lottery tickets.
All this — a massive, unprecedented expansion of gambling, with all the attendant damage to children, families and society — to fund our ever growing Pennsylvania state budget. It’s irresponsible, it’s dangerous, and it’s wrong.
We can do better.
TAKE ACTION: Tell your elected state officials to figure out a budget solution that does not involve the dangerous proposal of state-sponsored gambling expansion. Use our Citizen Action Center to easily send them this message.
- 11 Reasons Why Gambling Expansion is a Bad Bet for PA
- Op-Ed: “It’s time to kick PA’s 13-year-old gambling habit.”
- Philly Trib: Local Black clergy oppose gambling expansion