Saturday, October 29, 2005

Who's a Wall Flower Now?

Bob Ellis interviews state Rep. John Bradley, D-Marion, following the passage by the Illinois House of his bill to ban riverboat gambling in Illinois. This is the same man Rod Blagojevich called a "wall flower" for being such a back bencher.

“When we started this in the House they said I’d never get it on file. Then, we would never get it to committee and, if we did, we’d never get it out of committee. Of course, they claimed we’d never get it to the floor of the House and we certainly wouldn’t get it to a vote, and finally, of course, we would never pass it.”

It doesn't have a chance to pass the Illinois Senate, but it's creating a bit of angst in the Capitol as there are forces who want to see gambling expand in the state, or at least allow Chicago access to the 10th riverboat casino license that's setting in judicial limbo.

Here in Southern Illinois, Republicans Mike Bost of Murphysboro and David Reis voted in favor of the bill. Bradley's fellow Dems, Brandon Phelps of Norris City who represents Metropolis and its Players Riverboat Casino, and Dan Reitz of Steeleville, who also represents counties along rivers that could potentially get a riverboat someday, voted no. Only Kurt Granberg of Carlyle proved the closest Democrat to support the bill.

Surprisingly, and probably what is causing the angst in Springfield and Chicago is that Mike Madigan, the Democratic Speaker of the House, voted in favor as well.

Check out the full vote here.

I guess Bradley can mulch up the wall flower designation given to him by Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

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