Senate Republicans Roll the Dice on Casinos

1210795554Last week, Gov. Deval Patrick hinted that his casino legislation may make like Lazarus and rise from the dead. We applauded him for suddenly having the courage to kick House Speaker Sal DiMasi while he’s down (politics, hooray!).

But an unlikely party is pledging to tack the casino proposal onto the Senate’s budget as an amendment.

The Republican Party, to be exact.

As Senate leaders unveiled a $28 billion budget Wednesday that relies heavily on new taxes and savings, Republicans pledged to file Gov. Deval Patrick’s casino bill as an amendment to the spending plan, saying the state needs new sources of revenues.

“We want to fortify the governor’s efforts going forward if he intends to refile the bill in the new year,” said Republican Sen. Michael Knapik, R-Westfield. “Plus, we need the money.”

Here’s a suggestion: If you want to gamble in order to make up the budget gap, just drive down to Connecticut and play a few rounds of blackjack. As an added bonus, P. Diddy’s gonna be there this weekend. Everybody wins!