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Gambling Bill Reemerges

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Update: The Illinois House passed the new version on Wednesday, 69-47. 

    Gov. Pat Quinn has said in the past that he wouldn't sign a gaming bill that included slot machines at racetracks. 

    But that provision is included in a ressurected bill that's making the rounds in Springfield. 

    State Rep. Lou Lang wants to re-introduce a gaming bill that would expand casino gambling in Illinois by five -- including one in Chicago that Rahm Emanuel reportedly covets -- and add slot machines to racetracks. 

    The only change in the latest version being shopped by Lang, is that it does not include a provision for slots at airports or state fairgrounds. 

    Quinn still does not support the gaming bill, pointing to its "major ethical shortcomings" in a statement on Wednesday.

    “As long as I’m governor, I will not support a gambling bill that falls well short of protecting the people of Illinois. It is clear that this gaming bill still needs significant improvement," Quinn stated.

    A previous gaming bill passed the Illinois legislature, but because of Quinn's warning that he'd veto it, lawmakers never sent it to him for a signature. 

    Will the Illinois legislatures fortunes be different this time around? The legislature is in session next week, and Quinn hopes legislators will focus on what's important.

    "Illinois cannot gamble its way out of our fiscal challenges," He said. "I urge the members of the Illinois House and Senate to pay close attention to the most pressing issues that we must address by next Thursday, May 31: pension reform and Medicaid restructuring."

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