One good thing about the political divide in Springfield is that it keeps a lot of bad things from happening, bad things like casino gambling expansion. The proposal died in committee in the closing days of the General Assembly, but not before local officials got to think about having a casino in Springfield, proposed by developer Chris Stone. Several city council members polled on the matter by the State Journal-Register said they worry about whether it would have a negative effect on video gaming terminals, Springfield’s biggest new business. Only one alderman said gambling is a bad way to raise revenue. “Casino gambling and video gambling is premised on the strong taking advantage of the weak,” said Ward 7 Ald. Joe McMenamin. “It’s bad public policy to promote broad-based gambling. I think it basically encourages people to waste their time in pursuit of gain that goes to the owner of the gambling enterprises.” Way to go, Joe, for standing amid muddle to make a rare and clear statement of conscience. –Fletcher Farrar, editor and CEO

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