MONTGOMERY, Ala — The Alabama lottery proposal heads to the Senate after barely passing though the House of Representatives Thursday night.
Representatives voted 64-35 for the bill, barely clearing the 63 votes required to clear the 105-seat House. The late night vote came after 10 hours of contentious debate and two vote attempts.
Supporters cheered as House Speaker Mac McCutcheon announced the lottery bill’s success.
The first vote failed 61-37. However, supporters came back with a reconsideration motion and prevailed on the second vote attempt.
Governor Robert Bentley proposed the lottery bill and seeks the first statewide vote on a lottery since 1999. The Republican governor proposed a lottery as a means to provide money to the state’s cash-strapped Medicaid program. Alabama is one of six states without a state lottery.
The bill now returns to the Alabama Senate where lawmakers must decide whether to go along with House changes to the bill.