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Quinn Calls for Statewide Gambling Referendum

By Kevin Robinson in News on Dec 18, 2007 2:50PM

2007_12_quinn.jpgWith Governor Blagojevich's gambling go-to guy under indictment and state lawmakers struggling to figure out if they can trust him with expanded gambling, (and trying to decide how they'll split the pie up among themselves), that other guy in the state's executive branch, Lt Governor Pat Quinn, called for a statewide referendum on gambling yesterday.

In a press conference at the State of Illinois Building Monday, Quinn said "I think this is a perfect example of where the voters are needed to weigh in on their opinion," noting that he and Blagojevich ran in 2002 and '06 on a campaign promise not to expand gambling.

"We must consult with the people who elected us before taking an action that will allow wide-open gambling throughout Illinois and affect our state’s quality of life for decades to come," Quinn said in a press release prior to the event. Rod Blagojevich, however, was dismissive (or at least his spokeswoman was). In response to Quinn's calls for a referendum, she issued a statement that read, in part "in the spirit of compromise, and in the interest of making sure we fund mass transit and repair aging roads, bridges and schools, he's willing to accept a gaming expansion as a better source of revenue than raising taxes on people." Quinn confirmed that he hasn't spoken personally to the governor in about six months.