The People’s Republik of Maryland has slot machine gambling authorized in five locations and running at three of those. The state is well behind where it would have been but Democrats played games and now the entire web of obstruction is crumbling around them. So those very Democrats, led by Governor Martin O’Moron, called a special session of the legislature to discuss adding another gambling venue.
A brief history goes like this. Robert Ehrlich was elected governor in 2002 (taking office in 2003) and he worked on getting slots gambling in the state. The Democrats opposed this. Many, including then Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Moron, claimed that gambling was not a responsible way to raise revenue or meet budget needs. They said this knowing full well that the state runs a lottery with countless games designed to bring big money into the coffers.
In any event, Democrats opposed Ehrlich at every turn and gambling did not come to Maryland. He was defeated in 2006 by the aforementioned O’Moron who promptly worked with Democrats to get slots machines in the state. Suddenly, those Democrats who were opposed to gambling as a means to raise revenue were all for the idea because a Democrat wanted it. As an aside, Peter Franchot is the only politician I am aware of who has opposed gaming since the very beginning.
The Democrats had a problem. How on Earth could they convince voters that they did not block progress for four years simply because the Governor was a Republican. To do so would mean they put their political games ahead of the state and its people (they always do but want people to think otherwise). They decided that instead of passing legislation authorizing gaming they would put the matter on the 2008 ballot via referendum. This would allow the people of the state to decide and would take politicians off the hook for the decision that was reached. The referendum was very specific as to where the venues could be placed and how many slots machines would be authorized. The only thing allowed was slots machines. No table games were considered.
The problem with this approach is that the matter, if it passed, would become part of the state Constitution and any changes would have to go through the referendum process. I knew it was moronic to do this (gambling does not belong in the Constitution) and voted against the measure. In reality, I would have voted against it anyway because of the way Democrats played games with Ehrlich.
The measure passed and casinos started being built. They were doing fairly well (but are now not producing as expected) and now the state wants another one. It also wants to consider table games. This was not addressed in the regular session as it should have been so the Governor called for a special session to address this. This violates the reason for special sessions but the rules have never stopped Democrats. This process is going on because the next election is this November and if they do not get the issue on the ballot then they will have to wait two years to get it done. See how stupid it was to do it this way?
There is no urgency for another casino. After strong starts, two of the three already running are not doing as well as they were expected to and an additional one would likely siphon money from the others. Keep in mind, there are still two that need to be built.
There are also shenanigans going on (say it isn’t so). The Democrats are having closed meetings to decide how to handle things. The casino folks want better tax rates and a better deal than the other casinos got. This would certainly cause the other casinos to want a new deal. The Democrats are working on back room deals to leave the tax issue off the table and to get the additional casino on the ballot. They will address the tax issue after the next election (during the next regular session of the legislature).
This is just plain wrong. The Democrats in Maryland led by their inept Governor have increased the taxes on the hard working citizens of this state a number of times. The sales tax, the income tax, taxes on services, taxes on practically everything including the air we breathe have been raised over the last six years to feed their hunger for our money.
Now, after screwing the taxpayers with ever increasing tax hikes the Democrats want to cut a special tax deal with the people who want to run the new casino. The mega wealthy folks in the gaming industry will be given what amounts to a tax cut while the people who live in this state have their taxes increased.
How does that strike you? If you live in Maryland it will likely not surprise you (OK, the leeches who live off government handouts might not know nor would they likely care) because the Democrats screw us all the time.
You know it is underhanded because they are deliberately hiding it until after the election. They know that voters would likely reject any referendum that gave tax breaks to the casinos at a time when their taxes have been raised (and more than once). So the cretins on the left will play nice and try to get it passed. If voters approve it then they will get out the Vaseline and bend us all over.
I recommend that the legislature reject this plan and keep it off the ballot. Since that is not likely to happen (Democrats need their palms greased) I implore all Maryland voters to reject this referendum at the ballot box.
Say no to tax breaks for casino operators.
A word of caution on the referendum. Know what you are voting for. Those weasels have a way of wording it so when you think you are voting no you are really voting yes.
Say no to being raped by the Democrats of Maryland and their sugar daddies in the gaming industry.
Say no to slots gaming expansion in Maryland.
[Disclosure: I have never (nor will I ever) gambled in a casino in Maryland. I take my business to Delaware]
Never surrender, never submit.
Feb 7, 2011 Political
The People’s Republic of Maryland is run by a bunch of Democrats who only know how to tax and spend. They continue to spend long after the well has run dry and they make up shortfalls by taxing the people who work hard for their money. They are only too eager to take that money and spend it on people who do not work. They especially like to spend it on illegal immigrants.
The Maryland government is much like the federal government. It taxes for a specific purpose and then uses the money for something else. At the federal level there is no bigger example than Social Security. The Social Security tax has been collected for decades and the money has been spent on all kinds of projects. If the politicians had left the money alone there would be plenty but they did not so now it looks like they will eventually have to increase taxes to replace the money that was collected. We are paying for it twice.
A similar situation exists in Maryland with the transportation fund. Money has been collected via gasoline taxes and vehicle registration fees for transportation projects but the politicians have raided that account and used the money to pay other bills. Now, to make up for the shortfall, a politician has a proposal to raise the gasoline tax by 10 cents a gallon.
If this is not bad enough, the same moron wants to increase vehicle registration fees by 50%. It already costs at least $130 dollars (this goes up depending on vehicle type and weight) every 2 years so this would mean an additional $65. How much more will these leeches suck from us?
The proposal would go to referendum so at least the people would be allowed to vote on it.
The proposal would also include language to prevent the transportation fund from being used for any other purpose. In other words, they spent money in a way that was not intended and now there is not enough so they will raise taxes to cover that screw up and promise not to do it again.
This is corruption, plain and simple.
How many more times are taxpayers going to be forced to pay more to cover the bungling ineptitude of those put in office?
Maryland raised taxes to record levels only a few years ago and saw revenues drop because people are finding ways to avoid paying more. People go to nearby states to buy tobacco products and to buy items where there are no sales taxes.
The increase also comes with a 1 cent inflation index starting in 2013. You can bet the taxes will not drop if there is deflation.
Maryland taxes people for everything. We pay state taxes, local taxes, city taxes, sales tax, property tax and if they can figure out how to do it we will pay a tax on the air we breathe.
We get little for our money (except for those who suckle at the welfare teat) and it is high time the people in Annapolis started running the state in a fiscally responsible manner. We need a better return on investment.
I am tired of paying through the nose for the failed policies of pandering career politicians who are inept and too stupid to actually run anything.
These people need to get a clue so let me give them one. You cannot tax your way to prosperity…
Never surrender, never submit.
Jan 6, 2011 Political
The People’s Republic of Maryland decided that it would like to have slot machines to increase revenue to the state. Former Republican Governor Robert Ehrlich introduced the idea but the Democratically controlled legislature failed to approve slot machines saying that gambling was no way to balance budgets. Some were opposed to gambling in general so each time the measure was introduced, it failed.
The state operates a number of lottery games but somehow slots were bad.
Once Martin O’Malley defeated Ehrlich and a Democrat was back in control the idea of slots was not such a bad one. Even O’Malley, who opposed slots when Ehrlich was governor, liked the idea and touted slots as a needed venture.
The Democrats in the legislature decided that they did not want to be on record as voting for slots so instead of legislating them they put the matter before the people in the form of a referendum. The people were not allowed to vote via referendum on the issue of taxes, which Democrats raised to historic levels, but the issue of slots was a different story.
At the time I commented that putting the matter to referendum was insane because the measure would become part of the state Constitution. The people passed the measure and the state Constitution had slots as part of it. I did not like this idea because the slot parlors would have to be in the locations spelled out in the Constitution and any change would have to go to referendum. If the legislature would have enacted slots via the legislative process then any changes could be made the same way.
There have been issues with the process and so far only two slots locations have opened (five were authorized).
Baltimore Orioles owner Peter Angelos has decided that he would like to buy the Rosecroft racetrack which is not operating and is going through bankruptcy. He would like to open it and put slots there.
There are a few problems that need to be addressed. Angelos is the owner of a Major League Baseball Team and Major League rules say that team owners cannot own gambling entities. Since Angelos is an attorney and runs one of the major law firms here I am sure he has that angle taken care of.
The real problem is that Rosecroft racetrack is NOT on the list of authorized locations for slots. This means, as I pointed out when this was first discussed, the change must be done via referendum. The next time that can take place is November of 2012. Angelos wants to have things taken care of by December of 2012.
In Annapolis this morning, Senate President Mike Miller told WBAL News that the Angelos offer is”a win-win” for Maryland racing. However, he is not sure if lawmakers would agree to let Rosecroft have a slots license. Miller also points out that any license for Rosecroft or any other slots parlor would have to be approved in a referendum vote, and the earliest that could take place is November, 2012. [via the linked article]
Will Angelos take the chance and buy the racetrack when voters might reject the placement of slots there? If the measure is rejected he will be stuck with a racetrack that went bankrupt because it did not attract gamblers. Slots were originally discussed to beef up the ailing horse race industry and they might help Rosecroft greatly.
But Angelos would have to buy the place now and hope that voters allow Rosecroft to have slot machines and that depends on the legislature putting the matter on the ballot.
If the legislature had done this through the legislative process then they could use that very process, right now, to add Rosecroft and allow Angelos piece of mind.
This kind of nonsense from cowards in elected office stymies growth and hinders development.
And I called this from day one.
As an aside, the first slots parlor to open is about five miles from my house but I refuse to play slots in Maryland so I have not gambled there. Gambling was bad when a Republican wanted it so it must still be bad even though a Democrat decided it was A-OK. I have been there to eat and the food is good. I recommend it if you get the chance.
I rarely play slot machines but when I do Delaware gets my business.
Thanks to a bunch of cowards in the Maryland General Assembly whose chickens have come home to roost.
Never surrender, never submit.