Lawmaker Suggests Gambling Money For New Vikings NFL Stadium
The NFL has claimed for years that they are anti-gambling, but again on Monday there was proof of how the league and gambling go hand in hand when it comes to generating revenue. A lawmaker in Minnesota is proposing slot gambling as a way to help finance a new Vikings stadium.
Republican legislator Tom Hackbarth is attempting to bring slot gambling to the two horse tracks in Minnesota. His attempts failed earlier this year, so now he is tying the slot gambling into something that everybody in Minnesota cares about-the Vikings.
Originally, Hackbarth wanted to create a constitutional amendment that would have brought a casino to Minnesota to pay for the stadium. His latest twist, however, is to expand the gambling options at horse tracks in the state.
“I don’t know what else we’re going to do if we don’t go to gaming,” said Hackbarth. Time is running out for the state’s lawmakers who must have a plan in place before the Vikings lease at the Metrodome runs out at the end of the 2011 season.
Hackbarth has some clout in the state. He has been a legislator for the past seven terms and he believes that the slot gambling may be the only solution at a time when funding for a new stadium has run dry.
The NFL has not yet been notified about the legislators plan, but they have shown recently that they can not only co-exist with gambling, but that they can endorse it. NFL owners voted in favor of allowing teams to partner with state lotteries this past year.
Already, there have been advertisements on the NFL Network for lottery scratch off gambling tickets in New Jersey and Maryland. The Giants and Redskins are just a couple of the many teams that are using their name and logos on the lottery gambling tickets.
The one form of gambling the NFL still claims to be against is betting on their sport. The league, in conjunction with other major sports leagues, successfully kept single game betting out of Delaware, a state in which there are no NFL teams.
Critics have now argued that the NFL has a double-standard when it comes to gambling. These critics believe that the NFL’s anti-gambling message has lost some of its value when the league agreed to partner with the state lotteries.