Instant Racing

The 2011 video of Instant Racing machines before Attorney General Jack Conway declined to investigate their usage.

Bizarre court case to be argued before Kentucky Supreme Court Aug. 21

On Wednesday, Aug. 21, a bizarre case will be argued before the Kentucky Supreme Court. The case has received little attention, yet it potentially jeopardizes the rights of parties to call witnesses and ask questions.  Yet, despite the seriousness of the matters contested, at times The Family Foundation’s attorney, Stan Cave, has stood, alone – toe-to-toe with 13 attorneys representing the Kentucky Revenue Cabinet, the Kentucky Racing Commission and the eight race tracks in the state.

Kentucky’s highest court will be asked to determine whether illegal gambling on video slot devices morphs into pari-mutual wagering on horse races by virtue of the devices displaying a 2”x2” three-second video clip of an old horse race in the upper right corner of a spinning reel display. NO actual horses, race tracks or jockeys . . . just a tiny, three-second video. Two state agencies believe the device becomes an actual horse race and are asking the Kentucky Supreme Court to agree.

“Are they serious?” you ask. Yes, they are!  In order to accomplish their purpose, taxpayer-supported agencies intend to deprive citizens’ constitutional rights.

Debuting at Oaklawn Park in Arkansas, the devices were and are still promoted as “reel” devices. “Reel” devices are patently against the law in Kentucky. Yet, Kentucky’s public agencies are arguing these reel devices are actual horse races. One agency even argues that reel devices become actual horse races if the gambler thinks he’s betting on actual horse races.

It gets worse.

In the Fall of 2010, The Family Foundation was barred by the Franklin Circuit Court from asking any questions about such a preposterous belief. In 2012 the Court of Appeals reversed that ban but now the Kentucky Supreme Court is being asked to reinstate it once again. If it does, that has the impact of jeopardizing the right of every person to have their “day in court.”

Never before has a Kentucky Court held that anyone may be barred from asking all questions before the first question is even asked. Without the ability to ask questions, there is no right to call and cross-examine witnesses or to introduce evidence.  Yet, Kentucky’s own Racing Commission and Department of Revenue are arguing for the Supreme Court to do exactly that – to establish a precedent whereby a party can be gagged from asking questions and calling witnesses. Added to the intrigue is the fact that the Racing Commission and Department of Revenue tendered four affidavits in the case that swore to events that had not yet happened.

Strange? You bet. And they don’t want a single question asked about it.

Read more at: What We Believe on Gambling

Read more at: A History of the Instant Racing Court case via Articles by The Family Foundation


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P.O. Box 911111 Lexington, KY 40591 859-255-5400