the strip

Why Vegas Casinos Support Gays More Than Nevada’s Governor


While Nevada Gov. Jim Gibbons has promised to veto an upcoming civil unions bill once it hits his desk &mdahs; “I just don’t believe in it,” he says — gays are finding an ally in one of the state’s biggest players: gaming. So why is one of The Strip’s biggest casinos taking our side? Maybe because it’s the moral thing to do, or maybe it’s because it makes dollars and sense.

Harrah’s Entertainment — which owns Caesars Palace, Bally’s, Flamingo, Harrah’s, Paris and the Rio and managed to see past RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s business economics and provide health care benefits to the partners of gay employees — is warning legislators in a way they understand: Not supporting domestic partnerships with enough votes to override a veto will only help decimate Nevada’s already suffering tourism industry. Says Harrah’s Senior Vice President Jan Jones in a Tuesday letter: “Our state cannot afford to lose any more revenue to other destinations because of a reputation as a place which is not socially or politically the right place to do business or to vacation. … Our company does aggressive marketing to this community. How can we say to them ‘we want your business, but we don’t care about your rights.’”

While we’re at it, though, how about a gay club in Vegas that’s a little less skeevy than Krave? Can we work on that?

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  • VegasTeaRoom

    Where were these people last month when this bill was almost cripples in the Nevada Senate? Is this the last minute Hail Mary that will flip the FOUR necessary votes?

    Too little, too late from a company that could have made a difference?


  • Topher

    Even if the only benefit for these casinos is in their pocket book, I applaud any business that is willing to take a public and political stand for gays and lesbians. It may be too late to make a difference in the legislature, but it will likely go a long way with the public understanding of why we are just as important as any other customer.

  • VegasLover

    Harrah’s Entertainment has always been a huge support of the LGBT community. I only stay at Harrah’s casinos, and they reward me for my loyalty. Their employees are told to never assume a same-sex couple wants two double beds and they advertise actively in LGBT publications. If you are in Vegas – ONLY stay at either Caesar’s Palace, Rio, Harrah’s, Flamingo, Bally’s or Paris. (I personally like Bally’s, best kept secret in Vegas, rooms usually free there as well) See you at the end of the month at the World Series of Poker! (Which Harrah’s also owns)

  • atdleft

    @VegasLover: I don’t know if I’d say that. Yes, Harrah’s is good on LGBT issues… But so are Wynn Resorts & MGM Mirage. And since Harrah’s has lousy odds on its slots and card games, I actually prefer Wynn & Encore. Their games are a little better, but more importantly I really feel like a princess staying there. ;-)

    Still, I’ll give kudos to Harrah’s. Perhaps I’ll direct my friends & family to Paris & Rio when they visit me for my housewarming party in Vegas.

    @VegasTeaRoom: I hope so, TeaRoom. David Parks told The R-J he can get the two votes in each house to override Idiot-in-Chief Gibbons.

    I just hope we get more info soon on who we can contact and what we can do to get them to make DPs happen.

  • BradK

    “…How can we say to them ‘we want your business, but we don’t care about your rights.’…”

    This doesn’t seem like a problem for the Ho’Bama administration, or D.C. Democrats in general.

  • DaveO

    This has always been the case. Corporate America has always been ahead of government wrt gays.

  • VegasLover

    @atdleft: oh I didn’t know about the odds on Slots and Card games as I don’t play them, except for Pai Gow and the odds are the same on that everywhere (shitty). But I mostly play poker. In vegas – loyalty pays off.

  • Daniel

    Harrah’s has two great casinos in Council Bluffs, Iowa, and gay and straight couples can get legally married at them so if you still want to support Harrah’s but not Nevada, go to Council Bluffs.

  • bryce

    good times is a great vegas gay club!


    And, of course, the support is easier from casinos than from other businesses because those inclined to boycott them for not being anti-gay mostly don’t think casinos are too moral either.

Comments are closed.