Change of heart reflects Ohio Lottery and Department of Public Safety concerns

Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland on Monday reversed his previous push for those as young as 18 to be allowed to gamble. He said he now believes the legal age for slot machine gambling in Ohio should be 21.

Strickland said his actions reflect the concerns of leaders at the Ohio Lottery, which will be in charge of overseeing slot machine gambling, and the Department of Public Safety, which will have to police it.

The governor, in a brief statement, did not state what those concerns were. But since pushing his proposal to add electronic slots to horse-racing tracks and subsequently announcing the minimum age to gamble would be 18, Strickland faced criticism from church organizations and others.