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Alabama Lottery Plan Drawing Little Protest

22 October 2002

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – As reported by the Associated Press: ``As Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman campaigns yet again on a lottery proposal, Baptist morals watchdog Dan Ireland is once more spending the fall preaching against gambling -- in Tennessee.

``Opponents led by the religious right killed a Siegelman-backed lottery plan in 1999 and they figure they can do it again should Siegelman win his re-election bid against Republican nominee Bob Riley.

``…The Siegelman campaign said lottery opponents shouldn't be so self-assured.

```What we encounter more than anything is a lot of supporters. It is still the issue people are most interested in,' Siegelman spokesman Rip Andrews said.

``…Siegelman this year is promoting a lottery to fund public education, but opponents aren't doing much to fight it aside from backing Riley, who opposes a lottery.

``…The Christian Coalition says its survey of state legislative candidates found a majority of candidates in both the House and Senate oppose a lottery.

``…But a Mobile Register and University of South Alabama poll published in June showed that a majority of Alabamians favored a statewide lottery, particularly one with its proceeds going for public education. During campaign speeches, Siegelman's biggest applause usually comes when he mentions the lottery…"

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