Seminole Tribe praises Gov. Crist for negotiating compact

The Seminole Tribe of Florida held a celebration for Gov. Charlie Crist, the newly-independent politician who negotiated and signed the first Class III gaming compact in state history.

The deal authorizes slot machines at seven tribal casinos and table games at four facilities. The tribe has agreed to share a portion of the revenues with the state -- estimated to be $1.2 billion for the first five years.

The tribe long sought a compact but prior governors refused to negotiate. Crist was the first one to come to the table.

"When you're a friend of Seminole, you'll be a friend of Seminole for life," tribal council member Max Osceola Jr. said at the rally, The Miami Herald reported.

Tribal leaders said they supported Crist's independent bid for the U.S. Senate. One of his opponents is Republican Marco Rubio, a state lawmaker who filed a lawsuit against the first compact that the tribe and Crist signed.

Get the Story:
Seminole Tribe gives warm welcome to Gov. Charlie Crist (The Miami Herald 5/6)
Seminoles cheer Crist at compact celebration (The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 5/5)
Crist can expect political support from Seminoles (The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 5/5)
Seminoles don't rule out no-limit poker before July 1 (The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 5/6)