Why a Chicago Casino May Never Happen By Robert Reed, Chicago Magazine March 14, 2019 at 3:48 pm There’s plenty of action at Rivers Casino in suburban Des Plaines on this Wednesday afternoon. Scores of gamblers shovel quarters and dollar bills into banks of garishly colored video terminals with flashing names like Blazing 7’s Blackjack and Ultimate Texas Hold ’Em. Others prefer the high-stakes buzz of table games. “Guess what?” shouts a player to a small stack of pale blue chips as he scoops them up. “I love you!” It’s surely the type of lively scene Chicago’s business leaders envision, roulette wheels spinning in their eyes, when they push for a casino within city limits. For decades, they’ve lusted for one, only to be repeatedly spurned by state lawmakers. On the surface, it seems like the tide is finally turning in their favor: Governor J.B. Pritzker is hot to expand gambling options statewide — and rake in millions of fresh tax revenues — and Lori Lightfoot and Toni Preckwinkle, the last two mayoral candidates standing, both favor a casino.