About a week ago at Politics in Minnesota, Briana Bierschbach described how Indian tribes have changed their political donations. (Tribal gaming dollars go bipartisan) In short: They’re giving more money to Republicans these days. In rough terms, the ratio has gone from 12:1 (favoring the DFL) to a ratio of 1:1.
The flipping of the Legislature from DFL to Republican control is one reason. But it may not be the most important one.
“Former GOP legislator-turned-lobbyist Bill Haas believes the shift in tribal donations is almost entirely attributable to the increased talk of expanded gambling.” Sure, the shift is important. But consider this observation, courtesy of Bierschbach: in the last decade, political donations from the tribes have increased as talks about pro stadiums heat up.
There are many reasons why a taxpayer subsidized stadium for professional sports leagues is a bad idea. If you’re a “clean government” supporter, here’s another reason: The mere existence of political talk about a stadium sucks money into the political machinery.