The more one learns about Jimmy Haslam, the harder it is to believe that the truck stop magnate didn’t purchase the Cleveland Browns with an acute awareness of Dan Gilbert’s success in leveraging the public trust of a local major professional sporting franchise for private gain at the ballot box.
Of course in the Cavaliers owner’s case it was the most expensive election campaign in Ohio history that led to the narrow passage of Issue 3 in November 2009, granting Gilbert an effective monopoly on casino gaming in the State of Ohio. Gilbert’s Issue 3 win came at the peak of LeBron James’ tenure with the Cavs. Before it, Ohio voters had soundly rejected each of four casino gaming measures that appeared on the ballot since 1990. Now Gilbert is well on his way to becoming an international casino gaming mogul, with business now underway in Detroit, Kentucky, Baltimore, and Toronto, as well as “online.”
And if the privatization and normalization of subsidized money traps for poor people and