Whether it was 106-48, as Casey Ross reports in the Herald, or 108-46, as Matt Viser and Andrew Ryan write in the Globe, the House defeated Gov. Deval Patrick’s three-casino proposal by an overwhelming margin today. Technically, the bill was sent to a study committee, but we all know what that means.
Ross’ is by far the more colorful of the two accounts, as he describes angry losers jeering and booing as the proposal went down to defeat. It is true that the casino opponents, led by House Speaker Sal DiMasi, had an unfair advantage — they had the facts on their side, as well as the moral high ground. All that and arm-twisting, too.
In retrospect, it seems clear that DiMasi knew he was going to win all along, and that whatever pressure he put on lawmakers was designed to run up the score in order to make sure that Patrick doesn’t try this again. Patrick can still be a successful governor. But he’s got to walk away from this terrible mistake.