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Poll: Voters outside Southeast Florida don't want to bet on casinos

Florida voters are divided across regional lines on the proposal to bring casino resorts to South Florida, with voters in nearly every region except Southeast Florida opposed to the measure, according to a new Mason-Dixon poll of Florida voters Dec. 9-13. Download Flgambling1211poll

The poll asked 625 registered voters if they support "gambling legislation that will lead to the establishment of one of the world's largest Las Vegas-style casino's in Florida;'' 48 percent said they oppose such a plan and 41 percent said they favored it, with 11 percent undecided.

The geographic breakdowns are striking: In north Florida 56 percent opposed, while 55 percent opposed in Central Florida, 48 percent opposed and 39 percent supported in Tampa Bay, and 49 percent opposed in Southwest Florida. In Southeast Florida -- from Indian River to Monroe counties -- 37 percent opposed and 50 percent supported.

Asked if they would be inclined to vote for or against lawmakers supporting "expanded Las Vegas-style mega-casino gambling in Florida," barely one third of respondents in north, central, southwest Florida and Tampa Bay said they would be inclined to vote for the lawmaker. In Southeast Florida, 48 percent said they would be inclined to vote for and 39 percent said against.

The sponsors of the proposal, Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff and Rep. Erik Fresen, have said that the measure is is intended to be limited to Miami Dade and Broward counties but the current proposal still opens the door for a casino to be built elsewhere. Another clarification about the poll question: the legislation also doesn't call for the largest casino in the world but a proposal by Malaysian casino giant Genting, if approved, has the potential to be the largest casino floor.

Brad Coker, pollster for Mason-Dixon Research, said "nobody paid for the poll." He instead piggybacked the two questions onto a poll he was doing for a Washington, D.C. client on children's issues. The measure, however, has been opposed by the Florida Chamber of Commerce and No Casinos, both are backed by Disney and a coalition of tourism-related businesses.

He said he was not surprised by the results. "Big scale, casino-style gambling has always been less than popular outside of the Broward, Miami Dade area,'' Coker said. "The rest of the state is kind of conservative."

Genting lobbyist and Miami Dade school board member, Carlos Curbelo, criticized the poll as 
"another bogus, disingenuous poll designed to confuse and misinform.'' He said a poll by the rival lobbying group, Associated Industries of Florida, released soon will counter the findings of the Mason-Dixon poll.

"Opponents of destination resorts are terrified to ask voters the relevant questions because they know that there is strong support for this policy in most regions of the state,'' he said. 

Comments

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harry houdini

"Individual Choice" Less Government. Aren't these basic planks of the Republican Party? Just asking!

Lad McMillian

Curbelo, the "another bogus disengenous poll designed to confuse and misinform" lobbyist should be KICKED OFF the School Board for __________( fill in the blank there are so many reasons).

Casino gambling is run by crooks. Any one supporting them is probably a crook as well.

There are no legitmate arguments for allowing casino gambling anywhere in the State of Florida - that includes getting the Indian run ones to be closed down as they should never have been allowed.

Casino revenues are not the way to fund the state budget.

Cubrelo and his cohorts, including the Chinese mobster type Au, should be thouroughly investigated...I bet the scrutiny would make them crawl back under the rock they came from...maybe they can take the two legislators who introduced the bill with them.

In fact I believe I will help unelect any legislator who does not understand Florida does not want nor need corrupt "house always wins" casino mobster joints stealing from the citizens and trashing the "neighborhood".

The State Constitution would have to be amended and the citizens of Florida have already voted three times to NOT have casino gambling devices on the soveriegn land of Florida.

Hope the rest of the legislature understands Florida does not need Casinos; that they would be a detriment to our beautiful state causing much more harm than good.


Sunni

It’s MGM who is in-bed with the Chinese mobsters - the Ho family - not Au. And yes, anyone who applies for a license should be thoroughly investigated - that is why Fresen and Bogdanoff have proposed the legislation; to regulate further gaming with an oversight independent commission, and to curb any further expansion of gambling establishments. There are many good reasons for destination resorts. Here are some; jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs, increase in tourism, upgraded infrastructure, economic growth, revenues to the State.

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