Top 5 This Week

Related Posts

Texas Faces Tough Battle Over Casino Legalization Amid Billionaire Push

The push to legalize casino gambling in Texas is expected to face even greater challenges in the next legislative session, as billionaires expect to make business in Texas.

In 2023, the Texas House fell eight votes short of passing a constitutional amendment to allow the construction of eight resort-style casinos in the state.

According to a report by the Dallas Morning News, Casino and resort giant Las Vegas Sands is pushing to bring destination casinos to Texas. The company has hired numerous lobbyists and donated millions to lawmakers through its political action committees. Amending the Texas Constitution to allow gambling requires support from two-thirds of both the House and Senate, followed by approval from a majority of voters.

However, it’ll be difficult for the congress to approve such a reform. Rep. Jeff Leach, R-Allen, said any action on casinos will need to start in the Senate.

“Based on what happened last session, I believe it’s generally understood that unless and until there is real movement and momentum in the Senate next session — meaning the Senate actually taking up and considering the issue — there is likely not going to be any meaningful action on it in the Texas House,” Leach told The Dallas Morning News.

This presents a significant obstacle, as Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who leads the Senate, has stated there aren’t enough votes to support casino legalization. Additionally, the Texas Republican Party’s platform opposes any expansion of gambling, including legalized casinos, and calls on GOP lawmakers to reject donations from gambling industry lobbyists.

Governor Greg Abbott and House Speaker Dade Phelan have shown openness to the idea of resort casinos in Texas. However, Lt. Gov. Patrick insists that any gambling legislation must have substantial Republican support. “We don’t pass any bills out that have a handful of Republicans and all the Democrats,” Patrick stated.

The Las Vegas Sands PAC has pledged to continue its efforts to introduce destination resort casinos in Texas. Advocates argue that these casinos would bring economic benefits through taxes, job creation, and construction projects.

Miriam Adelson, majority shareholder of Las Vegas Sands, and her late husband, Sheldon Adelson, have donated $21.5 million to Texas political organizations and candidates since 2018, including $1.5 million to Governor Greg Abbott’s campaign. In 2024 alone, Miriam Adelson has contributed $4.1 million to the Texas Sands PAC.

RA Staff
RA Staff
Written by RA News staff.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Award-App Footer

Download our award-winning app