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Mississippi group will study lottery but not take a stand

A study group will gather facts but does not intend to make recommendations either for or against creating a lottery in Mississippi.

That’s according to the group’s leader, Republican state Rep. Richard Bennett of Long Beach.

Mississippi is one of six states without a lottery, and Republican Gov. Phil Bryant has said legislators should consider starting one.

Republican House Speaker Philip Gunn opposes a lottery but created a group to examine how the games work in other states and how much money is collected.

The group met Thursday at the Capitol. Bennett said members will travel sometime to Louisiana and Arkansas to look at operations.

William Perkins of the Mississippi Baptist Convention said after the meeting that the state’s largest religious group opposes a lottery because “it corrupts the soul.”

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