Madrid Political Candidates Running on Anti-Gambling Platform

Posted on: May 5, 2023, 03:35h. 

Last updated on: May 7, 2023, 01:53h.

Alejandra Jacinto, the candidate of the left-wing Unidos Podemos (United We Can) party, and Roberto Sotomayor, a mayoral aspirant and member of the same party, want to implement a new Gambling Law for the Community of Madrid. These regulations would place further restrictions on gambling locations.

Spanish politician Alejandra Jacinto in a press photo
Spanish politician Alejandra Jacinto in a press photo. She’s hoping to get elected as Madrid’s new president on an anti-gambling platform. (Image: Madrid Diario)

Their new gambling law would place further restrictions on the locations of gambling facilities. The two assert the law would eliminate 90% of the gambling properties, despite legal gambling in Spain.

On Thursday, Jacinto and Sotomayor revealed that their new Gambling Law in the Community of Madrid would rewrite the current minimum distance of 500 meters (1,640 feet) to include not only educational centers, which the current laws address, but also other betting venues.

This will keep the gaming industry from proliferating and lead to the closure of nine out of 10 gambling establishments in the region, Jacinto stated.

Madrid will hold its elections on May 28.

Madrid is the largest city in Spain, with a population of 3.6 million.

Stopping Gambling Proliferation

In comments this week, Sotomayor said that there are 700 betting establishments in the Madrid region. In Madrid, Spain’s capital, there are 400. Sotomayor called this a “pandemic.”

In recent comments, Jacinto also claimed that Madrid’s current president, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, is working as a salesperson “at the service of Sportium and Codere” and added that Madrid could see “70 more betting shops” over the next decade if they don’t intervene.

Sotomayor and Jacinto also assert that the proliferation of gambling venues will lead to greater risks of gambling addiction.

Long Shots

A poll conducted by Media outlet El Español from April 17-21 found that Jacinto received only 3% of respondents’ support. Jacinto has led the Unidos Podemos party since last December.

Rocio Monasterio San Martin of the Vox (Voice) right-wing party, the list’s penultimate candidate, received 6%.

Ayuso of the conservative Partido Popular (People’s Party) is the frontrunner, with 52% of the support in the poll. Monica Garcia Gomez of the left-wing Más Madrid (More Madrid) party currently is at 20%.

That’s a strong sign that Ayuso will likely remain in office. It’s also a possible sign that the land-based gaming segment won’t undergo a major shakeup in its operations.