October 9, 2013 —
ALBANY, NY — According to a report issued on October 7 by Common Cause NY, since 2011, gambling interests have paid out over $3.2 million to New York politicians and committees. During that period the legislature voted twice to approve casino-style gambling.
The report said, “The analysis is particularly relevant in light of the November 5th ballot referendum in which New Yorkers will vote whether or not to approve casino style gambling. The amendment language has been criticized for its nakedly pro-gambling slant, and recent news reports have also revealed the formation of a new political action committee, NY Jobs Now, which is expected to spend handily to sway voters in favor of the amendment.”
The Common Cause NY data is based on a previous report, Stacking the Deck, which showed that industry interests have been spending consistently since 2005 to advance gambling in New York State.
“New York’s lax campaign finance laws make it possible for high rollers, like the gambling industry, to dictate public policy. The problem is that the rules of the game are stacked against average voters and the house always wins. We need campaign finance reform now to ensure that politicians are accountable to the people, not the highest pay-out,” said Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause NY.