One benefit of the passage of Question 7 in Maryland, assuming it withstands legal challenge, is purses at Ocean Downs will likely see an increase at the next meet. Of course, the flip side is purses at Harrington Raceway and Dover Downs will likely see a decrease.
The reason for this? As mentioned before, casino gaming has become a commodity; a question of convenience. Allowing table games in Maryland is not going to do anything to develop new casino gamblers, all it will accomplish is allowing those gamblers who live in Maryland to gamble in their own state instead of traveling to Delaware. Think of it as throwing a deck of cards in the air and after the cards hits the ground, you put them into two stacks, one for Delaware and one for Maryland. You will still only have fifty-two cards; the only difference is the number of cards in each stack.
Of course, this concept has not yet been accepted by Atlantic City and New Jersey's political leadership. They still think somehow they are going to get business back from those slot barns in Delaware, New York, and Pennsylvania. While it is true those seeking destination gaming, primarily convention business, may go to the Atlantic City, convenience gaming customers are not going to return. In fact, when the inevitable occurs and table gaming is approved in New York, what will happen once again is that virtual deck of cards will be thrown in the air and when the stacks are created, Atlantic City's pile is assured to be smaller.
If you look at Atlantic City, it is a lot like horse racing. There is too much capacity for the amount of gambling taking place. There will need to be consolidation in the gambling city, with some properties closing up. It won't make the Atlantic City pile any bigger, but it will mean splitting the pile up with fewer players.
If New Jersey was smart, they would build a casino in Northern New Jersey. True it is possible, when the cards are thrown up in the air, the pile for Atlantic City may get smaller, albeit it minimal, but a new pile would be created, this one coming primarily at the expense of the New York pile but when you combine the North Jersey and Atlantic City piles into one, the New Jersey pile will be taller. No new gamblers would be created but at least, like adding table games in Maryland, it will get New Jersey gamblers back in state which would be of benefit to state coffers. Right now, every time the cards are tossed in the air, what's happening is part of New Jersey's pile is being taken and being added to the top of the New York pile.
And New York is laughing the whole way to the bank.