It might be on life support, but the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel in Atlantic City has rejected a purchase bid from the unsavory online gambling giant PokerStars. It’s a bold move not only because the Club is in free-fall–having been counted out by virtually everyone except its ownership–but also because Gov. Chris Christie signed Internet gambling legislation this year in anticipation of this deal. That wasn’t his only motivation, of course, but suffice to say he probably didn’t see this breakup coming. Nor did the industry watchers who were counting on the British company’s invasion to jumpstart a gaming recovery.
Politicians who have been on opposite sides of the deal all along had similarly contrasting reactions to the news of the broken engagement.
State Sen. Raymond Lesniak said: “That’s not good news for Atlantic City for sure. Unless the Atlantic Club can find a white knight to invest in its operations, they’re going to be a couple thousand people out of work, which will also have a broader impact on Atlantic City’s recovery. I hope there’s a Plan B.”