The Associated Press

Mass. Casino Foes Ask Court To Allow Repeal Effort

BOSTON — Casino gambling opponents say Attorney General Martha Coakley was wrong to exclude from the November state ballot a question calling for the repeal of the state’s 2011 gambling law.

The group Repeal the Casino Deal filed a 53-page brief with the state’s highest court on Friday asking the justices to overturn Coakley’s ruling and allow Massachusetts voters to decide the question.

Coakley said in her ruling last fall that the question would violate the state constitution by interfering with “implied contracts” between the state gambling commission and applicants for casino licenses.

But the anti-casino group argues in its legal brief that gambling is known to be a heavily-regulated activity and that casino operators should expect that state laws could change.

The Supreme Judicial Court expects to hear arguments in the case in early May.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on wbur.org.
  • nopartyaffiliation

    First off, for lawyers and a legal team of supposed high quality working for Repeal The Casino Deal, this initial brief is an utter embarrassment. Filled with citations of completely irrelevant case law that have zero bearing on the interconnected issues of implied contracts, taking of property, and the award of licenses, by a new and uncharted entity like the Gaming Commission. I actually thought these people had a chance to get on the ballot. After reading this, it’s obvious to any layperson – without even a shred of legal backround – that this has ZERO chance of going on the ballot. The high court will dispose of this trash in short order and fashion. Coakley’s team will destroy these completely irrelevant arguments. Repeal The Casino Deal had better have more than that.

    Second, don’t waste your time Ribeiro because the citizens of Massachusetts will vote down any initiative to repeal the gaming law by over a 2-1 margin. It’s quite laughable that every newspaper in the state – carrying water for this propagandist, pathetic, despicable, and hypocritical anti-casino movement – picks one single poll that shows waning support, while every other poll taken over the last several months shows nothing of the sort.

    Third, in the unlikely event that Repeal The Casino Deal wins the millions to one lottery twice and gets on the ballot and somehow prevails, the legislature will override the ballot question on the grounds of fairness to all who were involved in the process for years including the several host communities that voted yes and were awarded licenses. Too much work, too much planning, too much riding on the outcome for the state and host communities. Several other factors will prevent any repeal effort from coming to fruition, not the least of which, is the insidious lies, deceit, and despicable propaganda of the anti-casino movement to spread fear into the citizens of Massachusetts. If won’t be the first time the legislature has overridden an initiative that has absolutely no business being on the ballot in the first place and potential repeal would be an unmitigated disaster for the state in terms of revenues and other factors.

    This repeal effort will be defeated one way or the other and this state will host gaming and entertainment facilities like 40 other states already do with the vast majority having very little negative impact on the communities or the states that host them. Repeal The Casino Deal is a misguided crusade being waged by irrational and authoritarian zealots who would try force their twisted and narrow minded life view on this state while destroying future and present jobs, new revenue streams, and host communities who need the help that this gaming law will provide along with top notch entertainment venues and new tourism attractions.

  • The Savage Hombre

    The individualist conception is similar to chemistry in the sense that the whole is made up of many parts, such as individual atoms.

Most Popular