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Indian Casinos Raise Stakes in State Politics

June 24, 2004

Re "5 Tribes, Gov. Sign Gaming Compacts." No wonder Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger "did not answer questions about the agreement." His billion-dollar deal to "grant Indians the exclusive right to run slot machines in California" is so blatantly racist that not even our existing U.S. Supreme Court could regard it as constitutional. If those in our Legislature approve this scheme, they too will have a lot to answer for.

Mark Davidson

Pasadena

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Isn't it interesting that I pay taxes and you pay taxes but when the state demands that Indian tribes pay taxes our governor calls them by another name. Your June 19 article said, "Money from the tribes is considered important to another Schwarzenegger goal: delivering a state budget on time, with no new taxes." If we force the tribes to make contributions, how is that different from taxation? Oh, they are sovereign nations, but Schwarzenegger is their governor?

Cynthia Helphrey

Duarte

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I lived in Louisiana for 12 years and was there long enough to see the outcome of bringing in easily available legalized gambling on the riverboats and in casinos. Once the novelty wore off, the only people who gambled in them were the poor who could least afford it. They are betting their children's food and milk money. Those who can actually afford to gamble go to Las Vegas for the really high-stakes games or the shows and other attractions. Attempts have been made to end gambling in Louisiana, but it apparently can't be done. It's entrenched, and the powerful casino owners are able to thwart those attempts. Most Louisianans know what a huge mistake this was.

Let's not make that mistake here.

Rebecca Swanson

Woodland Hills

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