Some reporting is now examining the ties between Newt Gingrich and gambling magnate Sheldon Adelson. I have looked at various angles of the connection, including Gingrich’s favorable treatment of the industry by thwarting an oversight committee and backing a tax break sought by casino owners.
Yesterday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported some uneasiness among evangelicals about the significant ties between Gingrich and Adelson. One Gingrich backer, Matt Towery, said Gingrich wouldn’t do any favors for Adelson. However, as I noted earlier in the week, he already has.
Today’s Toronto Star examines the relationship and quotes Fred Wertheimer as saying that Gingrich has opened himself up to questions regarding his policies on gambling and Israel by being so dependent on one donor.
Just an hour ago, ABC News Brian Ross looked at the investigation of Adelson’s gambling empire by the Justice Department and the Securities Exchange Commission.
Finally, The Nation’s Ben Adler reports on a conversation he had with Jack Abramoff, the lobbyist convicted of bribing Congress while Gingrich was speaker. In this conversation and in his new book, Abramoff describes Gingrich’s response to a request from Abramoff that Indian casino gambling profits go untaxed. Gingrich reportedly said that the Indian tribes had a good deal and didn’t need special treatment.
If this story is true, then in effect, Gingrich favored special tax treatment for the gambling industry but not for Indian tribes.
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