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updated: 8/2/2011 4:49 AM

Gambling interests are too involved

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The legislators and business interests from the two most corrupt states in America are collaborating on video poker. Evidently Louisiana's very own casino empire king, Nicky Nichols, has arrived in town to set up shop and has even dragged some Louisiana legislators along.

It is anyone one's bet which state has a more illustrious history of corruption: Illinois or Louisiana. I say the odds are even. The Tribune reports that state Rep. Lou Lang, a big supporter and sponsor of expanded casino gambling, has received about $70,000 in contributions from Nichols and his companies. Lang was quoted as saying "the contributions are just a show of appreciation for his support of gambling and don't affect his actions." Sure, Lou, I bet.

The public should be outraged over this development and oppose expanded casino gambling, including video poker, not on moral grounds, but purely because of the corruption that will follow. Absent proper oversight, the public goes bust and the corrupt get rich; in other words, business as usual in Illinois. Hit me.

Robert H. Hanaford