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December 19, 2014

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Gaming boosters on Clinton team blast Obama

The Clinton campaign's efforts to undermine the Culinary Union's support of Barack Obama continued Friday.

In a campaign-organized conference call with reporters, casino boosters blasted Obama as a foe of gaming, and a "hypocrite".

"I think today as the Senator comes to rally with culinary employees, that it's important these employees question his support of the industry in which they're employed," said Jan Jones, a former mayor of Las Vegas and current Harrah's executive.

Jones - joined on the call by Clark County Commissioner Rory Reid, former Nevada governor Bob Miller, and former Harrah's CEO and chairman Phil Satre - sought to portray the Culinary Union's support of Obama as a bad decision, given that Obama has spoken negatively of the industry that provides the

60,000 hotel and casino workers their paychecks.

As an Illinois state senator, Obama reportedly questioned the use of gaming as a tool for economic development in his state. In 1999, he voted against a bill that expanded gaming there, while in 2003 he voted for a bill supported by the gaming industry that loosened regulations.

As a presidential candidate, Obama has praised Nevada's gaming industry because, he says, it's well-regulated here.

Unclear in the discussion Friday was the relevance of Obama's gaming record. After all, while the federal government has outlawed Internet gambling and oversees Indian casinos, it leaves all other casino regulation up to the states.

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