Who Wins when States Run Lotteries?

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Topic — Who Wins when States Run Lotteries? Financial and Societal Implications

The latest wave of government run lotteries began in the 1960’s in New Hampshire and now all but five states have state-run lotteries, many designated as helping to fund causes such as education. How and why did this phenomenon arise and spread so quickly? Some argue a mix of factors, including tax aversion, anti-organized crime sentiment, 1970’s economic doldrums, and racism, all played a role.

What are the pros and cons of government-run lotteries?  Have lotteries fulfilled the dreams of budgetary relief proponents projected? Who is the “average” lottery player? What are the societal consequences of lotteries?


Presented in partnership with Ames Public Library and League of Women Voters of Ames & Story County.

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