Gov. Beshear Faces GOP Opposition to Ky. Gambling Bill

Thursday, 01 Nov 2012 11:28 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear will try once again in January to push an amendment through the legislature that would expand gambling tied to horse racing in the state, but the effort is expected to face opposition again from the Republican-controlled Senate.
Beshear, a Democrat, has sought to expand gambling since he was first elected in 2007, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. But his most recent attempt to pass a measure that would expand gambling at state horse tracks was voted down by Republicans.
But in January when he tries again, one of gambling's strongest opponents won’t be in the Senate to raise his opposition. Beshear appointed Republican Senate President David Williams to an open circuit court seat in the Southern Kentucky district last week.
Williams said after his appointment to the bench that his absence from the Senate doesn't mean the measure will pass since enough Republicans are still opposed to any expansion.
Senate Republicans elect a new caucus president in December. Senate Majority Leader Robert Stivers is expected to seek that position.
Beshear said it’s too early to speculate how the GOP election will affect the gambling expansion measure, which the state's important horse industry has sought for more than 10 years.

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