Alabama's Gubernatorial Candidate In Favor of State Lottery

Alabama's Gubernatorial Candidate In Favor of State Lottery

US South’s Bible Belt isn’t what it used to be – virtually all of the states comprising it now support and allow at least some sort of gambling, and that included lottery. With Mississippi being among the latest states who have gone down this route, Alabama is left standing alone…

…Surrounded by states that support lotteries, it prompted Democratic Gubernatorial candidate, Walt Maddox, to firmly support authorization of state lottery – for numerous reasons.

Against the Grain

45-year-old Maddox, Tuscaloosa mayor, is of the opinion that the fact that all neighboring states offer lottery gambling and Alabama doesn’t will lead numerous inhabitants of the state to migrate across the border and spend their money here…

…Money that could be spent the same way within Alabama and, if organized within state lottery, could yield tax revenues that could be returned to fund struggling schools, college scholarships and Medicaid program.

During a campaign rally last week, he said: “I believe it’s senseless we continue to educate children in Tennessee, Florida, and Georgia, without reaping the benefit in Alabama.”

Maddox considers this the “greatest economic development proposal” in Alabama’s history – unfortunately, it won’t be easy for him to make this happen.

Opponents in High Places

In order for lottery gambling to be authorized in Alabama, the state Legislature would need to propose the constitutional amendment – and there’s a hard chance of that happening because GOP politicians hold 96 out of 140 House and Senate seats.

The current Alabama Governor is Kay Ivey, a Republican, who, according to polls, has 56% support. Maddox has 42%.

Maddox’s big argument for the authorization of the state lottery is the fact that Alabama ranks 47th in healthcare in whole of US and that senior citizens, in particular, are in great jeopardy. “If you live in rural Alabama, then your life expectancy is six months less than your fellow Alabamians and three years less than the rest of the nation,” he said.

He added: “If we do not expand Medicaid, rural hospitals in Alabama will continue to close.”

Previous Governor of Alabama, Robert Bentley, who was forced to withdraw for the position amid a flurry of sex scandals, said in August 2016: “It’s time we stop supporting other states’ budgets.”

However, today’s Governor, Kay Ivey, thinks that Maddox’s talk is a way of “distracting voters from everything good her administration has done in Alabama.”

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