Sheldon Adelson, the CEO and Chairman of Las Vegas Sands, is currently waging an advertising war in Pennsylvania in an attempt to stop legislation that will allow for the expansion of video gaming terminals(VGTs). The proposed legislation changes will allow VGTs to be placed in truck stops, bars, restaurants and off-track betting locations.
Adelson Fighting House Bill 1010
Adelson is using his casino in Pennsylvania, the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem, to fight the proposed bill, known as House Bill 1010. Should this bill pass, it will allow numerous locations to start offering VGTs, which will offer real moneycasino games such as Blackjack, Poker, and more. Adelson has already spent $1 million on a very aggressive ad campaign in the state.
As it stands right now, there are around 27 000 VGTs in the state. However, all of these are found in the 12 land-based casinos. If this bill were to pass, the number of VGTs in Pennsylvania could potentially double. It’s easy to see why Adelson might see this as being bad for business.
Adelson’s Campaign Makes Scary Claims
The Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem gave $1 million to a new lobbying group, who have used the funds to produce adverts for television. The adverts claim that allowing this bill to pass will be very bad for the state and cost it billions in tax revenue. However, the claims that are made in these adverts are largely unsubstantiated or make use of information that is completely out of context. In fact, they have been criticized by many for trying to use deceptive tactics to mislead the citizens of the state.
Currently, Adelson is the only one of the state’s 12 casinos actively trying to block the new laws. However, they are sure more casinos will join soon. Adelson and his casino claim that if this law passes, it will ruin the land-based casino industry, put thousands of people out of work, and cost the state nearly $1.5 billion in tax revenue.