The Liberal Democrats have backed the so-called ‘crack cocaine’ of high street gambling, fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) which allow players to bet £100 per spin every 20 seconds — that’s £18,000 per hour. The vote on the obscure secondary legislation took place quietly in Committee Room 9 earlier today — despite promises from senior Lib Dems to crack down on the machines.
Calling for betting to be capped at £2 per spin — in line with bingo halls and casinos — the Lib Dem’s deputy chief whip Don Foster hailed a “real victory” when the government agreed to a review of the maximum stakes and spin rates on machines he described as “an aberration”:
“There’s no doubt this is ruining people’s lives. Fixed odds betting terminals have incredibly high stakes and prizes. People chase their losses. These machines are getting more and more sophisticated.”
Senior Lib Dems, including Nick Clegg, David Laws and Danny Alexander, were aldo photographed alongside materials campaigning against fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs). But this morning they caved into the gambling industry.
How do you know when a Lib Dem minister is lying? Their lips are moving (boom boom)!