No casinos in State Budget, GOP leaders say they lack votes | Eastern North Carolina Now

Doug Isley from Rockingham Co. speaks from the press.

By Peyton Majors
Christian Action League
September 8, 2023

Opponents to casino expansion in North Carolina may have won a major victory this week when House Speaker Tim Moore told colleagues a budget bill with gaming does not have enough votes to pass.

For weeks, Moore and Senate Republican Leader Phil Berger had said they were working on a new budget that would include a major expansion of casinos across the state, with Anson, Nash and Rockingham Counties landing the expected sites, according to reports. A fourth casino would have been operated by the Lumbee Tribe.

Currently, the only casinos in North Carolina are owned by Native American tribes in the western part of the state.

On Wednesday night, Moore sent an email to colleagues acknowledging that a casino-inclusive budget bill lacked the votes. Republicans have 72 votes in the 120-member House. A majority is 61.

“To be clear we will not pass a budget that does not have 61 Republican votes,” Moore wrote, according to WRAL. His office later confirmed the email as authentic. “As you can see, there are not 61 Republicans willing to vote for the budget if it includes gaming.”

Further cementing his point, Moore told GOP members, “Watch your inboxes for a caucus meeting next week about the budget without gaming.”

Republicans are expected to consider a new budget next week.

Berger said Thursday that a stand-alone casino bill likely would not pass this session, according to CBS-17.

Republican leaders may have been surprised by the opposition to casinos in the three proposed counties. Christian and conservative groups have hosted rallies opposing casinos in Anson, Nash and Rockingham Counties.

Earlier this week, opponents from Rockingham and Nash counties traveled to the state capitol in Raleigh to urge “no” votes on the proposal. Elisabeth Corona, a realtor from Rockingham County, said she feared a casino would lead to crime and substance abuse, gambling addiction and lower property values.

“Everyone does have a choice, but do you want to set people up for disaster, or have a part in making our state a better place to live?” she asked.

Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League, appeared at the Raleigh rally and emphasized the opposition by people of faith. The National Association of Evangelicals, he noted, says government-run casinos and gambling are “socially, morally and economically destructive” and are “rooted in covetousness and violate the biblical work ethic.”

The issue, he said, is dividing Republicans.

“When the state GOP Convention was held in June of 2021 at Harrah’s Casino in Cherokee, some Republicans sat out the Convention that year because of their disdain for gambling,” he said.

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Big Bob said:
( September 9th, 2023 @ 4:18 pm )
Better hope Timmy isn't banging a casino owner. Cause then it's getting built.
( September 9th, 2023 @ 12:35 pm )
Lt. Governor Mark Robinson keeping his mouth shut on casinos while other candidates for governor were actively opposing them is the latest disappointment from Mark. When he wants to assert himself on something, the Lt. Gov. has quite an ability to make himself heard, but on too many issues important to conservatives he has been missing in action. This is the latest, and follows his failure to engage on Obamacare Medicaid expansion, and on the Green New Deal. I am aware he was briefed in detail on the latter by conservative experts on the subject but still chose not to get involved. As presiding officer of the Senate, he could be a strong voice for conservative causes but for some reason on a great many of them has chosen to stay silent.

I was a big fan of Robinson when he ran for Lt. Governor but the luster has worn off. I am now looking at State Treasurer Dale Folwell, a conservative who actually engages, and usually engages succesfully on key issues, as the best of the field for governor.

One other huge blunder that has concerned me about Mark Robinson is his lack of political savvy. Two years ago, we had a conservative former legislator gearing up to take on establishment liberal Sen. Jim Perry in the primary. Out of the blue, Mark Robinson endorsed Perry, which the team working on the primary decided made it a lot more difficult to expose Perry's liberal record, and the effort was shelved. If Robinson made that bad endorsement without checking the lay of the land in the district, it was a reckless and stupid move. If he knew that there was a conservative effort afoot to challenge Perry, and chose to stand with the more liberal candidate, that would also be concerning. Either way, it opened the eyes to a number of conservatives in the area that maybe Robinson was not ready for prime time.

Sweden to severely tighten rules for naturalized citizenship for immigrants Rev. Mark Creech, Editorials, Beaufort Observer, Op-Ed & Politics Alcohol industry tightens grip on State lawmakers: ‘Paradigm Shift’ on restrictions


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