Be sure to read Mac Stipanovich’s latest op-ed on FloridaPolitics.com, with references that run the gamut from Lawton Chiles to The Mandalorian. Click here to read.
No Casinos is launching a new statewide ad campaign to warn Floridians about the new Seminole Compact, which opens sports betting that they say illegally expands gambling in violation of the Florida Constitution.
The Orlando-based anti-gambling group argues the deal between the state and the Seminole Tribe of Florida, signed by DeSantis late last month and could be finalized during a Special Legislative Session starting May 17, lets “politicians and gambling lobbyists, instead of voters, authorize a massive expansion of gambling” in the Sunshine State.
No Casinos specifically cite the Amendment 3 constitutional mandate passed in 2018 by 72% of Florida voters. The amendment gives Floridians “the exclusive right to decide whether to authorize casino gambling in the State of Florida.”
Despite that explicit provision, the group says an expansion of sports betting could turn every cellphone into a “slot machine.”
The details of the 30-year pact would support nontribal game rooms now running at pari-mutuel tracks, “decoupling” them from a requirement to hold pari-mutuel operations. In exchange, the Tribe would expand its operations to include online sports betting.
Florida would get revenue sharing starting at about $500 million a year from the Seminoles.
“Voters were crystal clear that they wanted the final say on gambling expansion in Florida, and we’re letting them know that this proposed compact is a blatant violation of the constitution and the will of the people,” No Casinos President John Sowinski said in a statement.
The ad — titled “People, Not Politicians” — will run both online and on cable TV in key markets statewide.
Floridians say President Biden is doing a good job managing the coronavirus pandemic, but on the whole, they could take him or leave him, according to a new FAU poll.
FAU’s Business and Economics Polling Initiative found 57% of Florida voters are fans of the new President’s virus response, and the same number said they like the stimulus package he signed earlier this year.
Yet just 45% said they approved of the job he’s done so far, while 43% disapproved, and 13% told pollsters they were still undecided a little over 100 days into Biden’s presidency. The bulk of Biden’s support comes from his own party, while few Republicans are willing to cross the aisle and give the Democrat high marks.
“The state continues to be sharply divided with only 13% of Trump voters and 18% of Republicans overall approving of President Biden’s performance in his first 100 days,” FAU professor Kevin Wagner said. “Younger voters were far more likely to approve of President Biden.”
Among Florida voters, Biden’s biggest drawback is his handling of the current situation at the southern U.S. border. More than half disapproved of his response, while just 29% approved.
Outside of a 100-day checkup, FAU BEPI found the American dream is alive in well in Florida — nearly three-quarters of Republicans and 52% of Democrats said that it is easier to make the dream a reality in Florida than in other states.
“It’s encouraging to see both parties coming together on that issue,” FAU BEPI director Monica Escaleras said.
The survey was conducted from April 30-May 2 and sampled 893 registered voters in Florida by phone and online. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percentage points.