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Interested Parties Margie Omero, Momentum Analysis Recent research findings in Delaware December 11, 2009
A clear majority (59%) of Delaware voters oppose expanding the number of gaming locations according to our recent research project in Delaware. Similar numbers of voters believe that three is the right number of gaming locations in the state. Voters say more locations wouldn't help Wilmington, and wouldn't ultimately solve the state's financial crisis. Delaware voters prefer greater government accountability over additional casinos to balance the state budget. Further, Delawareans also have positive impressions of the existing gaming industry. These views are consistent across demographic and regional lines. Voters are satisfied with the number and quality of existing gaming locations When voters were asked how many casinos Delaware should have, a majority (52%) said three. Only a quarter (25%) want four or more casinos and almost another fifth (17%) said fewer than three. Voters in Kent and Wilmington and women are even more likely to think Delaware should have just three casinos. Additionally, voters have a favorable impression of the "gaming industry in Delaware" (50% favorable, 35% unfavorable). Individually, voters view each of the three existing locations in Delaware even more favorably. Majorities also oppose an expansion into more locations When told of the proposals to expand the number of gaming locations, voters voice clear opposition Over half (59%) oppose additional gaming locations, with only a fifth (19%) in favor. Voters across every single demographic group we examined opposed expansion. There is also an important gender and age break; older women (over 55) are especially likely to oppose more locations (67% oppose, 11% favor), compared to younger men (49% oppose, 28% favor).
This holds true across the state, with particular concern about Wilmington
Across The State, Voters Oppose New Locations, Even Those Close To Home There Is Even More Opposition To Casinos In Wilmington
Favor/Oppose Additional Casinos (By casino location & voter location) 80 Favor Oppose DK
50 40 30 20
0 In Sussex & NC/ all vtrs
In Sussex/all vtrs
In Sussex/ Sussex
In Wilm/all vtrs In Wilm/Wilm
Voters in Sussex and Wilmington are just as likely to oppose locations near them as are voters elsewhere. Delaware voters specifically oppose new locations in Sussex County (53% oppose, 36% favor), with Sussex voters consistent (56% oppose, 37% favor). Even larger numbers oppose locations in downtown Wilmington (63% oppose, 26% favor),
with Wilmington voters similarly opposed (60% oppose, 28% favor). In fact, concerns about Wilmington pervade voters' concerns throughout the state. We asked voters to imagine that casinos came to downtown Wilmington. Over half (55%) find it likely that "Wilmington would continue to struggle" (13% unlikely). Wilmington voters were just as likely to have that view (57% likely to struggle, 10% unlikely). Voters prefer greater government accountability to more locations Voters don't see more locations as a way out of the state's fiscal problems. A majority (54%) find it unlikely that more locations would mean â€œthe state budget would be balanced.â€? Further, over eight in ten (81%) found the following statement convincing as a reason to oppose more locations: "We should find other ways to balance the state budget than by building more casinos. Our state government needs more accountability, rather than more casinos." Over half (57%) find that statement very convincing. These results are based on a survey of 623 likely November 2010 voters in Delaware. The survey was conducted by telephone October 24-28, 2009. A voter file of registered voters was used, and respondents were further screened to be likely 2010 general election voters. The margin of error for the sample overall is +/- 4.0%. The margin of error for subgroups may be larger.