Poll: Texas Voters Support Racetrack Slots

A new poll shows a majority of Texans support racetrack slot machines.

A statewide poll conducted by Baselice and Associates shows 64% of Texans support slot machines at racetracks and Indian reservations.

The poll, results of which were released Feb. 14, show 82% of Texans believe the state legislature should allow voters to decide via constitutional amendment if racetracks and federally recognized Indian reservations should be permitted to install slots. The sentiment is spread evenly across party lines: Republicans 83%, Independents 82%, and Democrats 81%.

The poll was commissioned by “Win For Texas,” a public advocacy effort to educate lawmakers and Texas voters on the proposal to allow slots at tracks and three reservations. The Austin polling firm conducted the survey of 1,002 voters from Jan. 30-Feb. 1.

“Given the state of the budget and economy, Texans want the chance to decide whether to keep those dollars here,” Sam Houston Race Park president Andrea Young said in a statement. “Our proposal will generate almost $1 billion in tax revenue annually and create more than 77,000 new and permanent jobs.”

The Texas racing industry has lobbied for racetrack gaming for years. Texas is surrounded by states--Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Oklahoma--in which tracks and purses benefit from gaming.