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Democrats, GOP collude to lure people into gambling

It seems like America’s political parties have never been more polarized. But when it comes to state-regulated gambling, they’re often playing the same hand. Unfortunately, it's a losing one.

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A poker dealer handles chips at the Magic City Casino in Miami Nov. 9, 2011. Newt Gingrich admits gambling might give the poor 'false hope,' but he deflected questions about a proposal to expand gambling in Florida, where one of his supporters, Sheldon Adelson, wants to build a new casino.

Wilfredo Lee/AP Photo

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Here’s a quick election-year quiz: Name one issue where Republicans and Democrats consistently agree, no matter where they live. And if you get this question wrong, we can go double or nothing on the next one.

The answer, of course, is gambling. From taxes and the environment to abortion and same-sex marriage, it seems like America’s political parties have never been more polarized. But when it comes to state-regulated gambling, they’re often playing the same hand.

In Pennsylvania, where I make my home, a Republican-led legislature approved casinos in 2004; the measure was signed by a Democratic governor, Ed Rendell. Across the river in New Jersey, Republican governor Chris Christie is working with a majority-Democratic statehouse to introduce on-line gambling. And New York governor Andrew Cuomo – a Democrat – has joined hands with GOP lawmakers in support of legalized commercial casinos, which will complement the ones that already operate on the state’s Indian reservations.

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