Commonwealth Casino Commission board chair Edward C. DeLeon Guerrero described as “disturbing and uncalled for” a lawmaker’s statement about “dynamiting” Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC’s casino/resort during a recent House Gaming Committee meeting.
In talking about the House Gaming Committee’s meeting last week during the CCC board’s monthly meeting yesterday, DeLeon Guerrero said some of the statements some CNMI’s policymakers gave at the meeting were “very disturbing” and uncalled for.
In reference to the role the CCC plays, DeLeon Guerrero said he heard a lawmaker demanding why the CCC doesn’t immediately terminate IPI’s casino license. “I heard statements about burning down facilities, smithereens,” DeLeon Guerrero said.
Commissioner Mariano Taitano said the word used by one House lawmaker was “dynamiting.”
Deleon Guerrero said those statements are uncalled for and not expected of policymakers.
It was Rep. Vicente Camacho (D-Saipan) who said at the House Gaming Committee meeting that nobody really knows what to do with the unfinished IPI building and he doubts if anybody wants to buy it as it would be too expensive to fix. “I think we should just kill it, and then we dynamite it,” said Camacho, adding that CNMI then build a memorial for ancient burials at the site.
DeLeon Guerrero conceded that lawmakers are granted immunity when they are in session but he pointedly expressed hope that lawmakers don’t abuse those privileges. “We need to be mindful that it’s a very difficult time,” DeLeon Guerrero said.
He cited the Jan. 6, 2021, incident at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. when a mob stormed the U.S. Congress. “And who started it? …They stormed the Capitol building because the former president called for. It’s a very dangerous for anyone to be suggesting things like dynamiting a building. It’s just totally uncalled for,” he said.