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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

John Romano column: Internet cafe ban is about politicians covering their butts

11

April

Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano's latest column is on the real story behind the Internet cafe ban. An excerpt:

Here is a Cliffs Notes-style time line of how this bill found its way to Gov. Rick Scott's desk:

1. Entrepreneurs discover they can make hefty profits by simulating casino-style games on computers in neighborhood storefronts.

2. Politicians harrumph.

3. Entrepreneurs donate to political campaigns.

4. The harrumphing stops.

5. A federal investigation of one of the largest Internet cafe corporations results in dozens of high-profile arrests and contributes to the resignation of the lieutenant governor.

6. Lawmakers act shocked — Shocked! — to find there is gambling going on.

While this unofficial record of events is not as comprehensive or annotated as the state's version, I like to think it is a more accurate reflection of what really happened.

 

[Last modified: Thursday, April 11, 2013 11:21am]

    

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