Gov. Bryant tells paper he's open to lottery discussion

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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) -- Gov. Phil Bryant says he'd be willing to discuss a state lottery in Mississippi.

The Clarion-Ledger reports that he's the first governor in nearly 30 years to say he might consider a lottery.

Former Gov. Ray Mabus pushed for a lottery in 1990, and lost the next election. Governors since then have said they'd veto any lottery bill that passed the legislature.

Bryant sent his written statement to a Clarion-Ledger columnist. Bryant noted that he wouldn't want to dedicate the revenue to specific areas such as public education. In his words, "Our children's future should not be left to a game of chance."

Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves said his decision would depend on whether a lottery would bring in new money or take money from sales taxes and casinos.