Rendell lashes out at TV reporter on gambling

A screen grab from 60 Minutes. (CBS)

January 9, 2011 6:28:31 PM PST
An interview to be broadcast this weekend shows Gov. Ed Rendell lashing out at a reporter who questioned the effect of legalized slot-machine gambling in Pennsylvania on gambling addicts.

In a CBS news promo spot for Sunday's "60 Minutes" story, Rendell is seen calling the reporter and producers "simpletons" and "idiots" as he maintains that people will gamble whether it is legal in Pennsylvania or not.

The piece to air Sunday examines how cash-strapped states are increasingly turning to casino gambling to make ends meet. Pennsylvania legalized slot-machine gambling in 2004.

Rendell spokesman Gary Tuma said Friday that "The governor feels strongly about many issues, and is usually willing to express his opinions." Rendell last week called Pennsylvania's casinos a success, saying they have generated jobs and revenue for valuable programs with "fairly minimal" social costs.