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Trump fumes over proposed smoking ban

14 April 2008

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey -- As reported by the Press of Atlantic City: "Donald Trump, the private citizen, detests smoking. Donald Trump, the casino owner, is a smoking advocate.

"Warning of possible legal action, the casino mogul denounced a proposed smoking ban that would prevent gamblers from lighting up while playing the slot machines and gaming tables at the city's 11 casinos.

"...Trump's comments came the day after City Council unanimously introduced a measure that would outlaw smoking on the casino floor beginning Oct. 15, but would allow customers to smoke in lounges away from the slot machines and gaming tables.

"...Trump, a nonsmoker who has served as a spokesman in national public service announcements to end smoking, has been an outspoken critic of the partial casino smoking ban. Pointing to the industry's 5.7 percent decline in casino revenue last year, he claims smokers have fled Atlantic City for gaming markets that have no smoking restrictions.

"With a complete smoking ban on the horizon, Trump is worried about an even deeper cut in business. He also warned that New Jersey could lose millions of dollars in casino-generated tax revenue.

"...Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort, Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino and Trump Marina Hotel Casino are members of the Casino Association of New Jersey, a lobbying group that represents Atlantic City's gaming industry. Trump said the association should consider a lawsuit to block the smoking ban.

"...Anti-smoking advocates say the proposed ban would protect gamblers and gaming employees from the dangers of secondhand smoke. The United Auto Workers union, which is trying to unionize casino dealers, said the ban would ensure a healthier workplace..."

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