The Alabama House Democratic Caucus is not shying away from expressing disappointment in the legislature's failure to advance the much-debated gambling legislation that divided lawmakers for most of the session.

The proposed package of bills sought to legalize casino gaming in specific locations, establish a statewide lottery, and allow online sports betting. It would also create a gaming commission to regulate gambling operations.

The original package passed the House. The Senate also passed the package after heavily amending it to remove casino gaming and sports betting provisions. After weeks of back-and-forth, a conference committee between the House and Senate met and hammered out what seemed like an acceptable compromise. However, the Senate failed to garner sufficient votes for the proposed constitutional amendment, and the session closed out without the bill receiving a vote.

Negotiations came down to the wire, with House members attempting talks until the final day. After negotiations fell through, the House passed the education budget and adjourned sine die.

Plenty of House Democrats expressed their displeasure with the Senate during the last weeks of the session. House Democrats were especially unhappy with the lack of a lottery, which would have almost exclusively funded education.

SEE: House passes ETF supplemental after bashing Senate for killing gambling package – 'This House bows down to the Senate too often'

After the session concluded, the House Democratic Caucus released a statement officially voicing disappointment in the legislature's failure to advance gambling, specifically the lottery.

"We are deeply disappointed that the people of Alabama will, once again, be denied the right to vote on this important issue," The statement read. "From the beginning, House Democrats have honored the clear mandate given by the People of Alabama, fighting for a true education lottery wholly devoted to education, and securing funding for health care throughout Alabama."

"Inevitably, people will continue to spend money on the lottery and other types of gaming in adjoining states and, sadly, Alabama will miss out on that sorely needed revenue. We expect that this issue will be considered in the future, and we will once again expect the clear mandate of Alabama voters to be reflected in any good-faith gaming legislation,” the statement added.

To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email

 Don't miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.