The state platform Iowa Republicans ratified earlier this month makes a strong statement against gambling. Craig Robinson of Brooklyn was chair of the Iowa G-O-P’s platform-writing committee, and he says committee members expressed no reservations about those antigambling provisions. Robinson says grassroots republicans support the planks. The document calls for a moratorium on new gambling licenses. Ironically, that’s at odds with the bill that cleared the republican-led legislature this spring. Robinson says the committee realized there were republican legislators who support gambling expansion, but Robinson believes most people believe there’s enough gambling in the state and the industry shouldn’t be allowed to expand. Robinson says he feels strongly about limiting gambling in this state because “we’ve gone too far.” But the antigambling sentiments in the party platform aren’t the most important parts of the document for him. Robinson says he’s a “less-government” kind of republican who favors tax cuts and reducing red tape for businesses. The former chairman of the Iowa Republican Party is now chair of the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission and Mike Mahaffey was the only member of the Commission to vote earlier this month to maintain its moratorium on gambling expansion. The G-O-P platform also calls for ending government ownership of casinos and getting rid of the state-run lottery.
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