Analysis of a poll released today by the Florida Chamber of Commerce on behalf of the Seminole Tribe paints an inaccurate picture of public opinion related to the recently announced Compact signed by Governor Scott with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. Though the results were released by the Chamber, the pollster, Public Opinion Strategies, is the pollster of record for the Seminole Tribe of Florida (multiple media reports on March 16, 2015 quote firm co-founder Neil Newhouse in a story of a poll released by the Seminole Tribe of Florida.)
Missing from the survey was any hint of how the Compact allows for the massive expansion of gambling throughout Florida – beyond tribal property, including new non-tribal casinos in Palm Beach County and Miami-Dade County.
A closer look at the numbers, and the questions asked to influence the final question related to public support, tell a different story. “The poll did not ask voters how they felt about expansions of gambling that the compact would allow throughout Florida, including to introduction of Slot Machines outside of tribal properties,” said No Casinos President John Sowinski. “But what the poll did find is that 72% of Floridians don’t want gambling expanded, which is exactly what the proposed compact does.”
Push questions in the survey were one-sided, extolling alleged benefits of jobs and revenues, and even saying that the compact would limit gambling around the state. In reality, the compact would allow for the biggest expansion of gambling in Florida history, would allow the tribe more slot machines under one roof than exists anywhere else on the planet, and would allow for new non-tribal casinos in both Palm Beach and Dade Counties AND allow gambling devices that resemble slot machines in every dog track, horse track and jai alai fronton in Florida.