Debate Arises from Illinois Online Gambling Proposal

Illinois Senator Terry Link and the chairman of the state Gaming Board, Aaron Jaffe, continue to differ in their opinions over ethical concerns and the latest cause is Link's proposal to include online gambling legalisation in a state land gambling expansion plan.

“We’ve waited a long time for this meeting to take place. I’ve heard myself being criticized on TV, radio, everywhere else by you, judge,” Link told Jaffe.

So Jaffe fired back: “I would say that you have attacked me more times than I have attacked you. You have been absolutely atrocious in that regard.”

Senate President John Cullerton and others are trying to find a way forward by analysing Jaffe's objection to the land and online gambling expansion plan and the proposals which, according to him, do not carry sufficient ethical safeguards.

Jaffe claimed all regulatory authority for his Gaming Board, so state regulators would have to sign off on even construction contracts and vendors in a Chicago land casino. He also seems to be concerned about a provision in the proposal that would remove the current members of the Gaming Board.

Saying the board has gone from one of the nation’s worst to its best, Jaffe asked: “Why would they want to remove everybody on the Gaming Board?”

Supporting Jaffe, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, who has twice vetoed major gambling expansion bills citing ethical concerns, feels that the Gaming Board has done a good job.

Concluding the exchanges Sen. Link said that he intends to leave Internet gambling in the legislation but would remove the provision that would fire the board.

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