South Carolinians Split On Casino

A recent Winthrop Poll of 1,082 likely South Carolina voters indicated 47.3 percent both support and oppose allowing gambling casinos in the state, with 5 percent unsure. Nearly 64 percent opposed allowing a limited number of casinos to operate in Myrtle Beach.

South Carolinians are deadlocked over whether gambling casinos should be allowed to operate in the state, according to a recent Winthrop Poll of 1,082 likely voters. The poll showed those favoring and those opposing gambling casinos in South Carolina each numbered 47.3 percent, with about 5 percent uncertain.

Nearly 64 percent of respondents opposed allowing a limited number of gambling casinos to operate in South Carolina if they only were to be located in or near Myrtle Beach. About 49 percent opposed casinos in Myrtle Beach if the revenue was designated for roads and other infrastructure needs. In the latest legislative session, state Rep. Todd Rutherford had proposed a plan to finance much-needed roadway repairs through Myrtle Beach casino revenue.

Winthrop Poll Director Scott Huffmon said, “Attitudes on this issue are fluid depending on specific proposals. This makes it hard to pinpoint deeply held feelings with certainty.”

In 2012, a partnership between SB Investment of Myrtle Beach, Stratford Land of Dallas and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee proposed a four-star casino-resort for Hilton Head Lakes that developers said would provide 4,700 jobs. The plan was unanimously approved by Jasper County and Hardeeville officials but Governor Nikki Haley said she would not approve it as required. Recently Hardeeville Mayor Bronco Bostick said the project had been on hold and that he had not heard from the developers in at least six months.