Sunday, December 21, 2014

Rendell Calls Casino Critics "Simpletons" And "Idiots"

Gov. Rendell's comments this week about the media and legalized gambling fell into place today like the spinning reels of a slot machine. Rendell, in his final Philly press conference as a public official on Monday, praised the press while admitting that he often gets angry and frustrated with their questions. Rendell also said his push for casinos in Pennsylvania had been a terrific success with "fairly minimal" social costs.

Rendell Calls Casino Critics "Simpletons" And "Idiots"

Gov. Rendell bares his teeth and karate-chops the air as he tells "60 Minutes," "You guys don´t get that!" during an interview about casinos that will air Jan. 9.
Gov. Rendell bares his teeth and karate-chops the air as he tells "60 Minutes," "You guys don't get that!" during an interview about casinos that will air Jan. 9. CBS

Gov. Rendell's comments this week about the media and legalized gambling fell into place today like the spinning reels of a slot machine.  Rendell, in his final Philly press conference as a public official on Monday, praised the press while admitting that he often gets angry and frustrated with their questions.  Rendell also said his push for casinos in Pennsylvania had been a terrific success with "fairly minimal" social costs.

And then we got a look at the preview for Sunday night's "60 Minutes" on CBS, which reports on the rise in legalized gambling as a way for states to raise revenue and questions whether the newest slot machines are more addictive.

“You guys don’t get that,” Rendell said, gritting his teeth and waving his hands during an interview with Lesley Stahl. “You’re simpletons. You’re idiots if you don’t get that.”

Did somebody at 60 Minutes just say "Jackpot!"

Here's what Rendell had to say Monday about gambling addiction:  "We have literally only a handful of people coming into our free treatment programs, where they can get therapy and the state picks up the costs. Those programs are dramatically underutilized."

Here's what Rendell had to say about the media: "It's actually been a pleasure dealing with the press. I get angry with them at times but our press does a very good job of keeping people informed. As irritated as I get at times, I always remind myself that this is the way that Democracy was intended to work."

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
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Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
 Follow Jenny on Twitter.

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