TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — The thought of bringing Las Vegas style casinos to the state of Florida is gaining popularity. A new poll shows Florida voters approve of bringing casinos to the state by a small margin and nearly three-fourths say gambling is not morally wrong.

Independents, Democrats and men most strongly supported the idea of having casinos in Florida while Republicans and women were nearly evenly divided on the subject.

A random telephone survey of 1,412 registered voters taken from Jan. 4-8 by Quinnipiac University showed 48 percent in favor of casino gambling in the state compared to 43 percent who were opposed. However, 61 percent said they believed casinos would be good for the state’s economy to 33 percent who disagreed. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

The Legislature begins its examination of the issue Tuesday.

On Monday, a Senate committee vote 7-3 to approve a measure that would allow three megacasinos in Florida. The bill would also allow dog tracks and horse tracks outside of South Florida to add slot machines.

Local voters would have to vote yes before either could take place.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.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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