Florida Is Getting Ready to Vote on Amendment 3
If this amendment gets the necessary approval, it will enable Florida residents to decide themselves whether to expand casino gambling operations in the state or not.
Gambling Industry Set to Fight the Proposal
According to available information, the Sunshine State’s gambling industry has donated $1.25 million to the Citizens for the Truth About Amendment 3 Inc, a political committee founded in June this year and whose aim is to campaign against Amendment 3, which is ready to appear on the November 6 ballot.
Amendment 3 intends to give voters in Florida the power to decide on the sensitive subject of casino gambling expansion. If it gets the approval of the majority of voters on November 6, the Amendment will change Florida’s Constitution.
Under the existing provisions, only lawmakers have the power to decide on the expansion of the gambling operations within the state borders. If Amendment 3 comes into effect, any future gambling expansion will need to get the support from at least 60% of all voters.
The committee has received a substantial financial support from the state’s gambling industry. Only this month, MGM Resorts International and Jacksonville Greyhound Racing Inc donated $500,000 each to this initiative, while the South Florida Racing Association contributed the amount of $250,000. Since it was founded earlier this year, the committee has managed to raise over $3.5 million.
Two Powerful Proponents of Amendment 3
But the fight against Amendment 3 won’t be an easy task, especially since the gambling industry will have to face two powerful opponents. Disney and the Seminole Tribe of Florida have publicly supported the proposal, and have donated a total of $26 million for its promotion.
It’s easy to understand why the Seminoles are not interested in any sort of gambling expansion at this moment. The main reason is the competition. The tribe currently operates seven casinos in Florida and doesn’t want to lose the monopoly it has over casino gambling. On the other hand, Disney doesn’t operate any gambling venues, but its governance is worried about the effect gambling expansion could have on the state’s entertainment industry, and therefore supports Amendment 3.
A poll recently conducted by Voters in Charge, which is the organisation behind Amendment 3, showed that 71% of the participants would give their support for the proposal in the upcoming General Elections this November.
Experts say the amendment has all it takes to gain the support of the majority of voters: it’s pretty straightforward, very easy to understand, and above all, it will once again allow Florida residence to themselves decide on any matter related to gambling.
It should be noted that voters had been the ones with the power to decide on any potential gambling expansion since the legalisation of gambling back in the 1990s. The state’s lawmakers have assumed the full control over this issue only recently.