Andrew DeMillo’s column this week takes up one of my persistent questions. If voters approve a state lottery — and I think they will — what form will it take once the legislature gets through with it?
There’s no doubt that the constitutional amendment is broad enough to allow just about any form of gambling — even a state casino a la Monaco, if legislators chose. Lt. Gov. Bill Halter has always said the legislature would never do that. He may be right, though the reasons might not be the ones you think. Oaklawn and Southland will hire whatever lobbyists are necessary to keep the lottery from infringing on business at their monopoly racinos.
Indeed, the legislature could severely limit the game and thus its potential for financing college scholarships. Halter favors putting the lottery in control of an appointed commission. The legislature cede its control to appointees? Hard to imagine.