Keller @ Large: East Boston Vote For Suffolk Downs Casino May Be Unconstitutional

June 14, 2012 12:00 AM
Keller @ Large: East Boston Vote For Suffolk Downs Casino May Be Unconstitutional

" BOSTON (CBS) – A casino vote on a planned billion-dollar compex for Suffolk Downs may be unconstitutional.

Before the proposal moves forward, its neighbors in Revere and East Boston need to give the thumbs up.

Read: More From Jon Keller

But, a leading expert on elections says that could be a problem.

These same objections were raised last year when the legislature passed a law that allowed big-city casinos to avoid citywide referendums.

But now, Secretary of State William Galvin is saying the Suffolk Downs casino better watch out for major legal flak ahead.

“It’s absurd to have these artificial decisions to say that only certain people can vote,” said Galvin.

The state’s top election official says lawsuits are likely if all Bostonians aren’t allowed to vote on the casino plan, comparing that to excluding certain taxpayers from a property tax override vote to build a new school.

“Do we say, ‘Well, only the people in the precinct where the school is can vote?’ Nobody else can vote, even though everybody else is going to have to pay for it and everyone else is gonna be affected by it? Of course not,” said Galvin "

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