Iowa’s Gubernatorial Candidate Decries Gambling
When looking at the state of gambling throughout the US, some states stand out as forerunners in the market. Gambling is a difficult market to move into immediately because there are no former blueprints to follow. Many states are writing the rules as they go in terms of legalization and regulation of online gambling. Some rules have not yet worked, and have already had to be amended and others have worked and are being strengthened in coming years of implementation. Iowa is one state where casino gambling has taken off and it is a state that is still in the midst of debates over the issue despite its success in the industry.
Bob Vander Plaats, gubernatorial candidate, is coming into his campaign with an anti-gambling stance. He has been very adamant about his disdain for the industry. His main criticism is that the state is well on its way to becoming too dependent on gambling for its revenue-generating activities. His fear is that like Las Vegas, Iowa could potentially make a big mistake by relying on gambling. Las Vegas has built itself up as a gambling Mecca over the years, but once the recession happened, the city was hit hard. It relied mostly on gambling and tourism as its almost sole revenues. Now, it is difficult for the state to regroup and it has yet to recover. During the height of the recession, the city’s legislators noted that 60% of homes in the city were either in foreclosure or owners were already defaulting. Vander Plaats main argument is that if Iowa relies on gambling, it will fall into the same problems as Las Vegas did if any type of financial turmoil happens in the market.
It will be a difficult position for Vander Plaats to stand on because much of the benefit of gambling cannot be denied. Expansion of gambling within the state of Ohio could mean that millions of dollars may be brought in. The state, like others in the US, cannot reasonably deny the huge potential dollars that could be available. Thus far the state has benefited from gambling and it will be hard to change public perception of the value of gambling.