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Referendum on casinos in Texas gets boost

Voters would decide on allowing 12 casinos statewide

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AUSTIN, Texas - A proposed referendum to allow casino gambling in Texas just got a boost with interest groups uniting behind the measure.

Dallas Republican Sen. John Carona on Monday said that big casinos, race tracks and Native American groups had agreed to support his constitutional amendment. If approved by voters, it would allow 21 casinos distributed across the state and create a gaming commission.

In the past, casino operators, horse and dog racers and the state's federally-recognized tribes couldn't agree on expanding Texas gambling. Carona said those groups have all agreed in principle on his measure.

Religious groups and some liberals oppose gambling as harmful to the community. But supporters say Texans are spending more than $3 billion in neighboring states and they want that money to create jobs in Texas.


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