Campaigns increase efforts week before casino vote - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Campaigns increase efforts week before casino vote

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -

With workers in the field door knocking and other manning the phones, both sides are fully invested in locking up every vote they can.

"It's all about the turnout at this point. We know it's going to be who gets their people to the polls will decide this on March 5th," said Todd Henderson, member of the "Just Say No Casino" coalition.

The "Vote Yes Linn County" campaign is also increasing its efforts this week. 

"It's all about the field effort at this point. It's about getting in those absentee ballots," said Marcia Rogers, with the yes campaign.

More TV ads are expected in the final week.

The spending for supporters and opponents on their respective campaigns could each eclipse $1 million; troubling for the "Vote Yes Linn County" campaign because of the money being spent from outside casinos.

"We planned a certain level of campaign, but when the "Just Say No" started pouring a great deal more money in, we had to match that to get out our message," Rogers said.

Meanwhile the "Just Say No Casino" coalition continues to question the timing of the city and county's involvement in the private venture.

Recently, casino opponents asked for the resignation of a Cedar Rapids council member and county supervisor who are serving on the non-profit that would ultimately hold the Linn County casino license.

"It's a dereliction of their responsibility to withhold the public's trust and they should be retiring immediately," Henderson said.

The jabs may be wearing on voters.

"I just don't like their bickering back forth," said Sandra Brock, a Linn County voter.

But it's not showing up at the polls, the auditor's office reporting early voting numbers rivaling that of a governor's race, something both sides can at least agree is a good thing.

"There's a lot of people that have their opinions," Brock said.

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