N.M. Senate rejects Navajo Nation compact

Feb 24, 2014 8:06 PM

The New Mexico Senate has dealt a blow to the Navajo Nation in its effort to build another three casinos in that state.

Last week, the Senate voted 31-10 to reject a state compact permitting the gaming expansion. The bill had passed the House only a day earlier.

Navajo President Ben Shelly was reported by the Associated Press as expressing bitter disappointment at the vote.

“I always thought that the state of New Mexico has always been friendly to Native Americans. I can’t believe that they have only been friendly to a few – the pueblos – and not to the Navajo Nation,” he said.

Currently, there are more than 20 casinos operated in New Mexico by 14 tribes and pueblos and five horse racing tracks that have casinos with slot machines.

Ray Poirier is the longtime executive editor at GamingToday.

Contact Ray at [email protected].

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