11 Questions with Gov. Jack Markell

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5. The Slippery Slope

RCS: Federalism is often referred to metaphorically as the laboratory of the states. Ideally your proposal will raise as much as $100 million and help you overcome Delaware's $750 million deficit. But do you have any concerns that this proposal's success will catch on with other states, taking away from Delaware's gambling revenue, and perhaps creating a larger moral issue for the country?

Gov. Markell: The way I look at it is this: Delaware has been in the gambling business for 15 years. I don't believe in Delaware, or in any organization, being half-pregnant. In my mind this is a comparative advantage. It's a tool that's available to Delaware. It's not available to any other state east of the Mississippi. My job is to do what's in the best interest of Delaware taxpayers, and I believe that by offering this competitor advantage we can generate additional revenue.

Should we be successful, might other States try to emulate us in their state? They might. But they're going have to get this federal law passed, and that's going to be a battle. They might be able to get it done, and if they do that could certainly lead to competition and some declining revenues. It's very special at this point, and what we do know at this point is Delaware has this opportunity available by law that other States don't have, and I think we ought to take advantage of it.

RCS Interviews Delaware Gov. Jack Markell

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