Spin Cycle

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Channeling LaGuardia, gambling opponents smash slot machine at State Capitol

David Blankenhorn of the Institute for American Values

David Blankenhorn of the Institute for American Values smashes a slot machine with a sledgehammer during an anti-casino event outside the state Capitol in Albany Tuesday. (Oct. 15, 2013) (Credit: AP )

Casino opponents channeled New York Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia by smashing a slot machine on the state Capitol lawn Tuesday to rally opposition to a referendum on gambling expansion.

In the 1930s, LaGuardia went public with a mission to rid the city of mob-controlled slot machines. With great flair, he rounded up thousands of machines — and photographers to shoot the action — smashed them and threw them into the water.

Two anti-gambling groups urged New Yorkers to follow LaGuardia’s model and not that of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and state legislators, who are supporting a proposal on the November ballot that would amend the state constitution to allow seven non-Indian run casinos in New York.

Here’s more on Tuesday's rally.

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