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Third Independent Poll Shows Casino Losing (posted Oct. 17, 2006)

A third independent survey shows the proposed Harrah's and Narragansett Indian casino losing by a wide margin. Yesterday, pollster Joe Fleming released the results of a survey he conducted for WPRI-TV and it had the casino losing by a 51 to 37 percent margin, with 12 percent undecided. Fleming polled 402 likely Rhode Island voters between Oct. 11 to 14 and the survey had a margin of error of +/- 5 percent.

The survey mirrors the results of two other recent surveys. A Brown University poll conducted Sept. 16 to 18 found the casino losing by 55 to 36 percent, with 9 percent undecided. And a Rhode Island College survey undertaken Oct. 2 to 4 had the casino losing by 56 to 33 percent, with 10 percent undecided.

Despite the more than $8 million spent by Harrah's to promote the casino, these three independently-conducted surveys demonstrate that the Harrah's message of jobs, tax cuts, and economic development is not resonating with state voters. Elderly voters are strongly opposed to a casino and only one-third of the state's electorate believes the argument that the casino will provide promised tax relief. Voters also appear squeamish about amending the state constitution to allow a resort-style gambling casino.