Slots at the Tracks? – In the end, compromise will prevail

July 20, 2010
By

Governor Deval Patrick has said he will not sign a casino bill that provides slot machines for four racetracks in Massachusetts.

State Senate President Therese Murray – and the senate – has essentially said the same thing.

Only House Speaker Robert DeLeo and the House have voted to order slots into the four tracks as part of a casino bill fashioned by the House.

The big question at this late stage in the formation of the final casino gambling bill is this – what is DeLeo and the House going to do without getting any support from the governor or the state senate president?

Will DeLeo stand his ground and fight? Will he refuse to budge and stymie the expanded gambling bill that needs to be completed and sent to the governor’s desk to be signed by July 31?

Will DeLeo put all his political capital into the slot machine variable and be willing to live or die by it?

We don’t think so.

Speaker DeLeo is a pragmatic person. He is not dogmatic. There is some ego playing out in this instance but not so much that it will ruin the bill.

In the end, there will be some form of compromise, as the speaker deserves his due from the senate and even from the governor to whom he has been loyal.

Again, we cannot predict what the Senate and the House are going to do about slots in the tracks, except to say, something will be worked out that the governor will sign.

After all, it can’t be any other way.

Everyone has to walk away from the negotiating table feeling that the right thing was done and that all parties were treated fairly.

What Speaker DeLeo cannot afford is to become the guy who buried the expanded gaming bill because he was unwilling to alter his position like President Woodrow Wilson did with the U.S. Senate over ratification of the Treaty that ended World War I and kept America from participating in the League of Nations that many considered sowed the seeds for World War II.

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