Yesterday, legislators in Florida approved a package that will create a major gambling expansion in the state. Within the details of the legislation, there is wording that would allow Donald Trump to apply for a casino license for a Doral golf resort he owns in Miami.
Trump’s Casino Potential
The legislation covers several aspects of gaming, including a new compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. The compact is set for 30 years and was negotiated with the tribe by Governor Ron DeSantis. The governor is a supportive ally of Trump. The compact has a provision that bans the tribe from interfering if the state gives a gambling license to a facility that is further than 15 miles in a straight line from the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood.
The Doral golf resort is just over 15 miles from the casino. It seems that language may have been added to suit any potential gambling plans of the Trumps. Back in 2017, Donald’s son Eric Trump took over the managing side of the property due to Trump becoming President. Just two months ago, Eric said that the golf resort would be a good spot for a casino.
Opponents Call Out the Compact for Favorable Treatment
Those who are opposed to the legislation feel that the compact gives favorable treatment to the Doral resort for Trump as well as the Fontainebleau Miami Beach Hotel. In the past, the tribe has been strongly opposed to an effort to create new casinos in the state.
Representative Michael Grieco says that he is unsure as to why the language involving the 15-mile detail was included in the compact. He does know that it removes a big hurdle that the former president and the Fontainebleau would need to apply for a gaming license.
Senator Jeff Brandes is the only senate republican to be in opposition to the legislation. He says the language regarding the 15-mile section seems to be specifically beneficial to Fontainebleau and Trump.
Removal of Online Casino Language
Earlier this week, it was reported that a major change occurred within the compact, as the online gambling section was removed. The compact now no longer includes any language regarding online or mobile gaming.
The change was made due to concerns that the language would lead to a back-door expansion of online gaming. Legislators were not happy with even the slightest chance that there could be such an expansion, so they wanted all language connected removed.
The section of the compact would have allowed Florida and the Seminole tribe to continue negotiating for three more years after signing the agreement on additional ways to offer other types of gambling, including online and mobile options.