LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – After decades of failed attempts to legalize casino gambling in Kentucky, supporters say they are more confident than ever that 2014 will be their year.
Two months after the launch of the pro-gambling ‘Kentucky Wins’ coalition, its co-founder, Ed Glasscock, is feeling more confident than ever.
“We think we’re going to be successful in the session as well as the constitutional amendment,” he said.
Glasscock is a civic leader and he acknowledges the groups Facebook page as a huge support base, with more than 50,000 likes.
“That means a lot,” he said.
Glasscock said the group is changing the approach this time around. The gambling amendment sought in 2012 failed and though racing interests are still part of the equation, racetrack protections would not be written into the Constitution.
“We’re talking about 20-25 percent of it going to the horse industry and breeder incentives and things like that,” he said. “The majority of it, roughly 75 percent, will be going for K-12 education, higher education, pension deficits, Medicaid and helping residents in Eastern Kentucky.”
Governor Steve Beshear said he is confident lawmakers can work through their differences and “figure out how to do this.”
A spokesman for the most outspoken opponent to expanded gambling said there is no better chance than in past sessions, in part because at least one new anti-gambling senator has replaced a pro-gambling senator.