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May 4th, 2010

IFPC Board Chair: “Iowa Does Not Need Another Casino”

notogambling5/4/10 Johnston, IA – Iowa Family Policy Center Board Chairman and former Speaker Pro Tem of the Iowa House, Danny Carroll today addressed the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission at their meeting in Johnston. Pointing to the social costs of gambling, Carroll stressed that any further expansion of gambling in Iowa would be counterproductive.

Carroll’s comments were made in conjunction with a group called No Casino Iowa which is headed up by Mitch Henry of Des Moines. Carroll, who has long been an active Republican, and Henry, who is a Democrat activist, appeared together in part as a demonstration of the bipartisan opposition to any further expansion of gambling.

Carroll and Henry held a joint press conference during the Racing and Gaming Commission’s noon recess. The press conference was held in a conference room next to the one being used for the commission hearing.

“The bankruptcies, embezzlements, foreclosures, suicides, and divorces that stem from gambling have nothing to do with party affiliation and neither does our opposition to any expansion of gambling in Iowa,” according to Carroll. “Gambling is still listed as a criminal vice for everyone other than state ordained gambling interests according to Chapter 725 of Iowa code, and we are standing together against more state sanctioned gambling because it is the right thing to do,” he said.

Referring to reports that proponents of the Fort Dodge casino effort may have attempted to buy influence in the process of issuing licenses through campaign contributions to Governor Chet Culver’s reelection, Carroll said, “We are working to oppose any new casino licenses because Iowa families deserve a better future for their children than a state full of casinos and the government corruption that often comes with them.”

In 1989, former Governor Terry Branstad signed the nation’s first riverboat casino legislation during the second of his four terms in office. Iowa now has 17 state sanctioned land based and riverboat casinos. The Iowa Family Policy Center has long opposed gambling, and is actively opposed to any further expansion of gambling in Iowa.

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