House Changes Course; Passes Lottery Bill

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – The Mississippi House has reversed itself and passed a bill to create a state lottery in the Bible Belt state where churches have long opposed it.

The vote came Tuesday in a special session, less than 24 hours after the House originally voted to kill the bill that the state’s Republican governor promises to sign into law. There was no debate Tuesday as a few representatives changed their votes from no to yes.

Mississippi is one of six states without a lottery.

Gov. Phil Bryant had been pushing lawmakers for more than a year to create one. Supporters estimate a lottery could generate tens of millions of dollars for the state annually – money Bryant wants to help repair crumbling highways and bridges.

Bryant says on Twitter: “This is a historic day in Mississippi.”

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