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Poll: Miami-Dade voters evenly split on casinos, but opposition growing

Miami-Dade voters are evenly divided on whether to allow casino gambling in South Florida, but opposition appears to be growing even as the Legislature debates competing plans to open the region to Las Vegas-style casino resorts, according to a new poll.

In a survey of 400 registered voters in Miami-Dade, voters split almost equally over the idea of large-scale casinos. The electorate is similarly divided over putting a destination resort and casino in downtown Miami on The Miami Herald’s waterfront property.

Pollster Bendixen & Amandi International conducted the poll Tuesday through Thursday for The Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald, WFOR-CBS 4 and Univisión 23 to gauge voters’ attitudes about casino gambling and other local issues. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.

On gambling “the vote in the electorate is still very much split,” said Fernand Amandi, the firm’s managing partner.

Forty-four percent of respondents said they supported the concept of Las Vegas-style resorts, while 46 percent said they opposed it — a narrow difference within the poll’s margin of error. Ten percent did not answer or offered no opinion.

The poll also asked about specific plans for a $3.8 billion casino resort on Biscayne Bay proposed by Genting, a Malaysian casino company that bought The Herald property last year. Forty-seven percent of respondents said they supported the plan, and 45 percent said they were opposed — again within the margin of error — with 9 percent offering no opinion.

The voters’ attitudes toward Genting’s proposal remained largely unchanged even after hearing arguments for and against the project, the survey found. The poll is the first to publicly gauge voter sentiment about the Genting proposal. More here.

Comments

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Katie Smith

Its great to hear that 44% of people support Genting's mega-casino plan. This is what Miami needs to stimulate the economy. There are NO other options on the table so lets look at what is.

A Facebook User

It would be sad if special interest monies succeeded in quashing the gambling reform bill. In an ideal world, the voters would get to know all the positive effects this bill will provide the city, county and state. I urge the voters and the legislators to go forward and pass the bill. It will mean the difference between ruin and prosperity.

Freddy M

I don't know anybody outside the elitist snob set (Braman and Dan Gelber) who is not for a resort casino in Miami. Can't let the job killers win

Mario Mendoza

JOBS ??!! JOBS??!! A casino will only produce dealers and prostitutes. Atlantic City economy was destroyed by the casinos, tons of small businesses were forced out. Las Vegas is NOT a prosperous city. Why not have Microsoft, Apple, Coca Cola, Ford, Toyota, open up regional headquarters or factories here? Our Bureau of Commerce is a failure.

maria gomez

Any reasonable person who has looked at the dynamics here should know that:
We need gambling reform,
Big gambling industry is OK if regulated.
Indians are robbing the state.
Disney is selfishly protecting their tourism "monopoly" (which is silly, the tourists will likely filter there as well) I vote for reform, pass the bill.

Ken Peppenelli

This is all typical because NY went through the same thing and come to find out that someone in Albany was on the take from the In dian to vote casiono out of NY state. But since all the race tracks no have thenm it has helped tremendously with education, taxes and contruction of new building. Wake up smell the coffee Casino's is the only way to save Florida.

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