My last blog post I focused a lot on how the Indian casinos are managing to stay sturdy in a flimsy economy while casinos in Las Vegas and Atlantic City are floundering. This post focus on some of the same issues, but brings in what is happening in Washington under cover of the budget crisis.
On late Friday, Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced a new anti-gaming bill ironically called the “Tribal Eligibility Gaming Act.” This bill would require tribes to demonstrate both a modern and an aboriginal connection to the land they wish to game on, something unnecessary beforehand. These would introduce just another hurdle in the process of being able to possess lands and game on it. This would amend the previous versions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. However, in that there are a lot of loopholes which allow for gaming in certain exceptions; Feinstein’s bill would be trying to fill up these holes.Senator Dianne Feinstein
Joe Valandra, principal owner and president of VAdvisors, LLC, a specialty advisory firm, wonders what her motivation is in all this. The article mentions she is trying to prevent gaming on parts of the San Francisco Bay area that she represents. But why? Valandra continues to ponder on what she is trying to protect so much that she introduces such a bill? I wonder the same question. In the last post, I mentioned the revenue that is produced by these casinos. For the quantity that exists, quite a lot of revenue. I cannot think of anything wrong with the placement of casinos; this sounds like just one more way to make things more difficult for American Indians. Feinstein tried to be sneaky in all this by introducing it on a day that is enraptured in the budget crisis. It just seems like there is something kind of sketchy in all of this. It reminds me of in the seventh Harry Potter book where Voldemort (the bad guy) and his followers are doing anything necessary to subdue the good wizards including proving you are a wizard otherwise you are not allowed to practice magic anymore. Maybe the reference is a stretch, but Washington is adding in all of these checks to the system to slow down the process. The bill hasn’t passed yet, just been introduced. But, we will all have to watch closely to see how the process develops.
Courtesy of Indian Country Today