Keller @ Large: Is Mass. Ready For Casino Gambling?

BOSTON (CBS) – State leaders want to bring casino gambling here to Massachusetts.

But, some critics are concerned that could be a losing bet for the Bay State.

WBZ’s Jon Keller is at large with Scott Harshbarger, the former attorney general of Massachusetts.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Harshbarger, who unsuccessfully ran for governor in 1998, argues that Massachusetts is “unprepared” to administer a new casino industry.

He adds that the Bay State would need a strong regulatory and enforcement scheme in place to ensure that money and power don’t just go to the benefit of would-be casino owners.

“We don’t have the enforcement tools to deal with economic crime,” said Harshbarger.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

More from Jon Keller
  • Italo

    This is political bull.

  • eddwal50

    of course harshbarger is against gambling hes no longer in office as to rules and regs it will happen when the state reps figure they can use it as a hack haven they just need to find away to protect the lottery

  • jaygee

    I would suggest that anyone who has a question as to what casino revenues do to help out state coffers need only research how many hundreds of millions of dollars the state of Ct. has received from Foxwoods & Mohegan Sun.Critics complain that casinos “hurt the poor” but so do $10 & $20 dollar scratch tickets, twice daily numbers games, soon to be daily Mass Cash drawings and other daily drawings not to mention Keno & Horserace games every 4 minutes. Just who is kidding who about “the poor being hurt?

  • El gordo

    I think Mr Harshbarger’s comments are spot on – if a former AG of high moral character thinks we don’t have the enforcement tools to keep the gaming industry from further corrupting Mass politics he should know. I for one don’t want it here – and as for the lottery – I think of it basically as a tax on the stupid.

  • mikey

    Why not legalize prostitution as well? Make it a package deal. Eat, drink, lose your shirt and take home a STD as a parting gift.

  • Middleboro Review

    Anyone with an attention span long enough to read last year’s grossly flawed legislation recognizes that former AG Harshbarger is correct in his comments.
    The flawed legislation was combined with a ‘Crime Bill” that should have been submitted separately, passed separately and implemented PRIOR to consideration of Predatory Gambling.
    This will add significantly to the Attorney General’s Office.
    “Attorney General Martha Coakley recently –

    …warned lawmakers that the cost of making it happen may be larger than anticipated. New regulations must be drawn up and new agencies created to enforce the regulation, she said.”

    In addition, anyone who followed the passage of the grossly flawed ‘Compromise Bill” that was formulated behind closed doors, was passed on July 31st, 2010, with no debate, is aware that there were 17 pages of ERRATA – mistakes, many of which contradicted the intent.
    Rather than accepted the exaggerated claims of revenue and jobs, let’s gather the facts and consider the costs.

  • Middleboro Review

    In a recent ‘draft’ report that had been held for 2 years, it was reported that:
    “The draft study estimated that about six suicides a year in the province are linked to gambling.”
    Gambling Addiction has the lowest reate of self-referral of all addictions and the highest rate of SUICIDE.
    This is “Gambling’s Dirty Little Secret: SUICIDE”
    From “Jackpot”! :
    Now and then, they might push a little too hard: Harrah’s, like other casinos, has seen its share of bankrupt gamblers, lawsuits and suicides. But without those friendly little nudges, we just aren’t worth as much.
    Las Vegas has a high rate of suicide, high dropout rate, low college graduation rate, and much else that isn’t enviable.
    The Commonwealth is blessed with the experience of others to examine and learn from.
    It’s time to consider the evidence.

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