MONTGOMERY – Governor Bob Riley issued the following statement on Tuesday after a Senate committee approved a Constitutional amendment that seeks to legalize and expand slot machine gambling in Alabama:
“People need to start asking their legislators: have you read this bill? Before you vote on this casino bill, are you even going to read it?
“Most of them have absolutely no idea what’s in this bill. So I contacted lawmakers today and outlined to them what’s really in this so-called Sweet Home Alabama plan. If they were being honest, they’d call this the Sweet Hoax Alabama plan.
“It’s a crooked bill. You can be for gambling, you can be against gambling, but what’s in this bill should be an affront to everybody regardless of how they feel about gambling. It’s just a crooked bill.
“This bill doesn’t limit gambling. It allows casinos to open up in every county of this state. It doesn’t regulate gambling. It gives casino operators immunity, so if they break the laws, they can’t be prosecuted. It even gives some casino operators a special low tax rate and fixes that low rate into our constitution.
“The Supreme Court has already ruled that so-called “electronic bingo” is illegal. Instead of trying to help the casino owners who contribute to their campaigns, I’m asking legislators to let law enforcement officers enforce the law in Alabama.”