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September 02 2009

Rob Walgate, (800)522-8683

Columbus – Ohio Roundtable, its President / CEO Dave Zanotti, and other petitioners have announced their intention today to file suit against Governor Ted Strickland, the Ohio Lottery Commission, and other state officials for the unconstitutional expansion of the Ohio Lottery into the commercial use of slot machines at Ohio’s racetracks.

Details of the suit will be unveiled at a 2 pm press conference scheduled tomorrow at the Hyatt on Capitol Square in executive meeting room AB. One focus of the litigation is on the action taken recently by the Ohio General Assembly to authorize the Ohio Lottery Commission to pass regulations to operate slot machines as a means to balance the State’s budget.

"Since 1990 over 10 million votes have been cast against casino gambling in Ohio. The Governor has cast aside all those votes and the results of four legal elections," stated David Zanotti, President/CEO of the Ohio Roundtable.

U.S. Senator George Voinovich will join Mr. Zanotti at the press event to express concerns regarding the Lottery expansion and State Issue 3.  “Casino backers have spent millions of dollars over the past two decades to carve out a special privilege for themselves in the state’s constitution. Ohio citizens deserve better.”

Roundtable rejects the premise that constitutional principles and the rule of law may be set aside for the short term purpose of balancing the state budget on the possibility that some Ohio citizens will be willing to gamble away scarce personal resources.

The Ohio Roundtable was founded as a nonprofit, public policy organization in 1980. The Roundtable has led successful ballot campaigns against casino gambling in 1990, 1996, 2006 and 2008.