DE Casinos Have A Bad Tell

Filed in National by on January 2, 2010

The three Delaware casinos released a survey in December that states that Delaware voters think three casinos is just about right for the First State reports The News Journal.

Dover Downs, Delaware Park and Harrington Raceway have launched a public relations campaign — including a Web site and a self-commissioned study — condemning the idea of added venues and encouraging employees to pressure lawmakers.

Ginger Gibson interviews House Majority Leader Pete Schwartzkopf who rightly points out the flaws in the Axis of Weasel’s survey such as the formation and the absurdity of the questions.

The poll asked: “As many as eight additional casinos have been proposed in Sussex, downtown Wilmington and elsewhere in New Castle County. Do you favor or oppose these proposals or aren’t you sure?” Fifty-nine percent responded that they either “oppose strongly” or “oppose not so strongly.”

The problem, Schwartzkopf said, is that no one has proposed adding eight new casinos, not even half of that.

Gibson also writes that the Central Delaware Chamber of Commerce and others support this thinly veiled protectionist publicity campaign. What amazes me is how a business organization can support a campaign that does not promote competition.

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Comments (14)

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  1. wikwox says:

    The fake poll/study and obvious co-opting of the Chamber Of Commerce will probably generate some ill will and a shrug from the states politicians. As for the voters of Delaware this attempt to manufacture an “Issue” will fall flat to say the least, no one, save emploees, will care.

  2. A lot of people do care. We do not want the expansion of gaming. I have no idea why they discredited the poll. It would have had a similair result it said three.

    The Milsboro and Downtown Wilmington have constituencies, but in this environment they would only push all 5 into the red unless the state cuts its take back to pre Markell levels. You are combining the people who oppose gaming with those who want to protect gaming. That is bound to be a majority.

    The rest just do not understand the world around us.

  3. John Manifold says:

    I have no love for DelPark or Dover Downs, but do not see how the “progressive” position is to encourage more gambling sites. I understand the libertarian impulses, but Dover Downs’ opponents are equally venal. They just want to join the state-supported monopoly.

  4. cassandra_m says:

    They discredited the poll because it started out asking about a scenario that isn’t under consideration. But that is apparently SOP for our local wingnuts.

    I don’t care much about creation of more casinos — except for Wilmington — but I do care about counting on casino revenues as a part of the state budget. These operations are not the windfall they used to be and it is beginning to look like states that want this revenue need to become partners in keeping them competitive as more venues get added in close by states. Helping casinos stay competitive is not what I want my tax dollars spent on.

    That said, it seems to me that if these three casinos want table games, the legislature should not grant that without extracting some dial back on opposition to more venues.

    In Wilmington, I think that a standalone casino is a missed opportunity. A casino that includes a small-convention quality hotel and/or a entertainment zone would give the city a chance to help launch other businesses that won’t need to be wholly dependent upon gambling. A standalone venue would be shortsighted as all get out and you’d have to wonder if it could be competitive with the Chester and upcoming Philly venues.

  5. Miscreant says:

    “We do not want the expansion of gaming.”

    What’s this “we” shit, Sparky? As one who was born and raised in Sussex County, I’d like to see it happen and so would friends and family. Thanks for looking out for us, though.

  6. nemski says:

    1. JM, I never said that having more casinos was a progressive position. This post is just to point out what’s going on around town so to speak. Also, kudos to Ginger Gibson for doing a good job on this. Maybe I think she did a good job on this because she didn’t quote Charlie Copeland or other CRI crony.

    2. I always laugh when Republican David talks about the majority as I remember his last dalliance regarding with the majority in Houston was dead wrong.

  7. pandora says:

    As a city resident, Cassandra states my position perfectly.

    Other than that, I could care less about casinos. They simply aren’t on my radar. Other than on blogs, I don’t think I’ve ever had a conversation about them – which may, or may not, be a barometer.

  8. John Manifold says:

    I’m old school on the notion of a casino in Wilmington. A city draws its strength from strong and safe neighborhoods, workplaces, shopping, public spaces, the arts.

    The promises of “economic development” from gambling, like those from baseball stadia, are chimerical hopes of spin-off commerce that don’t materialize — except for white-collar criminal defense lawyers.

    The city would gain far more if, for example, DCAD takes hold, than from dice dens.

  9. nemski says:

    Agree with you JM regarding casinos, they are fools gold for the economy, the state budget and those who gamble there.

  10. MJ says:

    David – who appointed you the spokesmodel for the people of Delaware (“we do not want…..”). You speak for a very small (minded) minority. There are many of us in Sussex who want to see Del Pointe constructed because it will bring jobs to the western side of the county. And with jobs you have taxpayers and more homeownership, the things that I thought rethugs called capitalism. I guess y’all speak out of both sides of your arse.

  11. meatball says:

    millsboro isn’t exactly the western part of the county, MJ.

  12. Brooke says:

    Just wanted to quote ” Axis of Weasel”, *giggle*

  13. The position that I expressed happens to be that of the majority any way that you cut it. The people who oppose gaming do not want more. The smart people who favor gaming realize that we can not sustain more venues in this environment. It would only end up making everyone lose money, if they got the financing somehow. The state would end up losing out by harming the industry. It will cost jobs and just expand the take of gaming from the local economy which will draw jobs from the rest of the economy.

    PA will expand gaming, MD can not even find financing to have 6 venues in a state that size. Alantic City is losing money and will upgrade to attract people back with shows and family entertainment. Sports betting was undercut so the chance to bring money from the underground economy was hampered. I do not see how you can justify it.

  14. The existing casinos aren’t in favor of competition? Big surprise!