Absence Forces Delay in Delaware Online Gambling Vote
The absence of a single Democratic lawmaker forced Delaware State Senate leaders to postpone a vote on that state’s online gambling future on Tuesday, leaving lawmakers only a scant few days to reschedule and reconsider the legislation.
The absence of the lawmaker, who went unnamed in wire reports, endangered the narrow plurality supporters of the measure enjoyed, and left Senate lawmakers unsure they had the votes needed for passage.
The bill, called the Delaware Gaming Competitiveness Act of 2012, remains one of the most important issues before Delaware’s legislature, and has received preliminary affirmation from Democratic Governor Jack Markell’s administration.
In addition to authorizing online poker, the bill would allow online access for Delaware’s residents to several other forms of gambling, ranging from slots and keno to parlay betting on NFL games.
The bill has reached its current form after several rounds of amendments designed to appease special interests. Among those seeking protection in the expanded market are the state’s three existing “racinos,” and the state’s horseracing owners’ groups.
It currently sits atop the agenda for the Delaware Senate and is expect to be voted on in Wednesday’s session.