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Mickey Arison, Religious Groups Question Casinos

MIAMI ( – More voices are coming out against the introduction of Las Vegas-styled casinos in South Florida.

The trio of the Florida Catholic Conference, the Florida Baptist Convention, and the Florida Family Action denounced a bill to bring resort casinos to Miami-Dade and Broward County. The group said expanding gambling would simply prey on the poor.

The Florida Family Action group took it a step further and said it would ask lawmakers to sign a no gambling pledge, which has become commonplace amongst conservative organizations.

At the same time, Miami Heat owner Mickey Arison said that he's not sure that building a casino resort in downtown Miami has completely been thought through.

"We're on a roll, and I'm not sure this is the right way to continue it," Arison told the Miami Herald. "I just don't know how Miami can handle that kind of traffic."

Arison's comments against a possible resort casino in Miami come from him not only wanting to protect the Miami Heat, but also Carnival Cruise Lines.

The Herald reported that Genting, one of the leading companies pushing for a resort-style casino, also owns 50 percent of one of Carnival's top rivals, Norwegian Cruise Line.

Arison took to Twitter on Friday and agreed with a post by someone who called the Miami casino plan, "pretty much the WORST idea ever."

Arison later got in Twitter trouble with the NBA after he made comments about the ongoing lockout.

The NBA fined Arison $500,000 for his comments, or roughly $14,285 per character, according to CNBC.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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