After Days Of Delays, Senate Will Give Gambling Debate Another Go

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The Massachusetts Senate tries again Tuesday to take up its casino gambling bill after several days of delays that have led many to question whether there's enough time to get the a bill to the governor before the end of this legislative session.

Democratic Sen. Susan Fargo is responsible for the latest delay by objecting to considering the bill on Monday. Last Friday, Republican Sen. Richard Tisei asked that the discussion be tabled — and too few senators showed up for a planned Saturday session for debate to begin.

Veteran senators call the volume of delays unprecedented.

But Sen. Stephen Brewer says lawmakers have to honor the chamber's rules.

"All we can do is have our ties and our suit coats on and be in the chamber for one o'clock when the gavel is brought down and be prepared to proceed," Brewer said.

Senate President Therese Murray says the Senate will approve a casino bill — she's not just not sure when.

"This is a deliberative process, there were 164 amendments," Murray said. "We're down to 25 more to go, but we're gonna keep at it."

Senate leaders are counting on Republican support of the bill, but Republicans are still insisting on votes first on tax cuts.

With only five weeks in the legislative session remaining, gambling opponents question whether there would be enough time to reconcile House and Senate gambling bills and get the compromise to the governor.

This program aired on June 29, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.