Yes, I know I said I was going to try to hold off on the daily updates, but it just keeps on coming, doesn’t it?
The Cape Cod Times today moves the focus of the story up to where it really belongs: on the Big Money folks behind the plans to build a casino in Middleborough. Stephanie Vosk reports:
Sol Kerzner, one of the top investors for a proposed Mashpee Wampanoag casino, was accused in 1986 of bribing a government official in South Africa to obtain exclusive gaming rights.
Kerzner was never convicted and the charge was dismissed in 1997, but it has followed him each time he has tried to back a casino, both here and abroad.
Gov. Deval Patrick, who may or may not have already made up his mind about casino gambling, needs to understand that this is what life is going to be like if he says “yes.” Tribal leaders resigning in disgrace; hazy ties to imprisoned sleazeballs like Jack Abramoff; unproven charges against shadowy financiers; and a constant drumbeat of questions for elected officials about how much they knew, and how much they should have known. Is this really what you need, Governor?
Also, Steve Bailey has a terrific column in the Boston Globe. A highlight: “This has always been less about sovereignty than about the rush by the tribe and its deep-pocketed financial backers, just as elsewhere around the country, to cash in on the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, one of the worst pieces of legislation ever to come out of Congress.” Yes indeed.
Update: The Times’ George Brennan reports on another member of the Mashpee Wampanoags — Maurice Foxx, chairman of the state’s Commission on Indian Affairs — whose bio had once falsely claimed he’d served as a Marine in Vietnam. Foxx says he’s not sure how the bogus information ever made it into the record. Funny how that happens.