Lottery sales drop as people give up on the dream

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I guess times are tough enough that we've quit dreaming of striking it rich -- even the last hope of the common man, the state lottery, is suffering a shortfall in ticket sales. With the increasing tax on cigarette, the only one of the convenience store's holy trinity (cigarettes, beer and lottery tickets) that is still thriving is beer.

According to USA Today, Indiana has seen a 10% decline, Florida 7%, and California 5%. Ironically, a California Lottery spokesperson placed the blame on mass transit. She posited that as fewer people bought gas, they missed the opportunity to buy lottery tickets at the gas station register. (I wonder if they've considered selling tickets on the trains and buses.) Other spokespersons blamed small jackpots and the closing of stores that sold the tickets.