A Win for Richmond: Casino Effort Defeated

Following Election Day, Richmond For All’s membership will celebrate the defeat of the casino effort — securing a NO Vote majority on the referendum. We’ll celebrate in solidarity with Richmond community members who turned out in record numbers to avoid this iteration of extractive corporate development that would exploit and harm our most vulnerable communities.

“I am so proud of our organization and our city. We proved that an organized grassroots can defeat moneyed interests. We believe in knocking on doors and talking to our neighbors. That’s what made the difference.”

— Quinton Robbins, RFA’s Political Director & #CommunitiesNotCasinos Team Lead

This victory was won through grassroots community organizing. Through one-on-one conversations with community members; listening to and learning from our fellow Richmonders’ conditions, needs, and desires; and speaking truth to power about what real economic and community development looks like. Richmond For All has again shown what a multiracial, multigenerational progressive organization can achieve in coalition. We are grateful for the leadership of Katherine Jordan, Kenya Gibson, and Stephanie Rizzi — public officials who were on the right side of this critical issue. We convey our sincere gratitude to Paul Goldman of the Vote No RVA Casino committee for his support and tireless work on this issue. We also thank all of our donors, volunteers, canvassers, community partners, and supporters.

Throughout this electoral season, Richmond progressives have faced a challenging landscape: first, a legitimate challenge for the governorship from a Republican candidate whose campaign was buoyed by revanchist white backlash, and second, a Democratic Party that sought to entrench corporate interests at the state level. In short: we were called upon to defeat Republicans while simultaneously combatting the profit-over-people projects put forward by the corporate wing of our own party.

The race for Governor and the referendum on the casino — these races should not be close. Taken together, the narrowness of the outcomes in the Governor’s race and the casino referendum show the critical need for campaign finance reform and the political defeat of the devastating alliance between moneyed interests and white supremacy. Across both parties, this alliance represents a clear and present danger for Richmonders and for all Virginians — urban, suburban, and rural alike.

Richmond For All is committed to continuing our fight for a city for all: affordable housing, fully-funded public schools, workers’ rights, environmental justice, progressive taxation, and true economic development — not extraction.

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