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Florida Veterans Looking for Override of Bush Veto

The vets are furious the governor vetoed a bill that would have let them sell instant lottery-type tickets at charity bingo games, and unless they get their override, the vets predict the governor's veto could have political consequences in November.

Disabled veteran Dick Giese was thrilled when the Legislature overwhelmingly passed a bill allowing instant bingo ticket sales at charity bingo games.

Vets say the tickets could generate 50 percent more money for their community projects, but Jeb Bush vetoed the bill. The vets wrote to House Speaker Johnnie Byrd, asking him to allow the House to vote on whether to override the governor's veto.

Gov. Jeb Bush has never had one of his vetoes overturned by the Legislature in more than five years in office, but vets hope these little tickets change his luck. The bill's House sponsor, Charles Dean, knows going against the governor is politically incorrect, but he takes this issue personally.

An override won't be easy. Opponents like Andy Gardiner say they'll fight it, but supporters say vets could take out their frustrations at the polls this November.

With nearly two million vets calling Florida home, their voting strength could impact Johnnie Byrd's Senate hopes and even the presidential election.

Rep. Charles Dean hopes veterans and concerned citizens contact the House speaker's office to express their views on whether the Legislature should override the governor's veto on the instant bingo bill.

Charities in 38 other states use some form of instant bingo for fundraising.


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