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“I don’t want a coronation. I want there to be a second opportunity, and I think they’ve done that,” he said. “If it was just to create a monopoly, I don’t think the state would be better served by that.”

While some Senate Republicans are ready to back the legislation, the party’s leadership in the chamber presented a 10-bill alternate package to freeze tax rates and lower corporate taxes to help spur job growth.

Mr. O'Malley, a Democrat, has said gambling expansion could create thousands of jobs, but Senate Minority Leader E.J. Pipkin said the better approach would be making the state more business-friendly.

“Instead of worrying about casinos and locations and splits, we need to look Maryland citizens in the eye,” said Mr. Pipkin, Cecil Republican.

Critics have accused gambling proponents of trying to push the casino bill through a special session rather than allowing full discussion next year as a way to appease wealthy developers.

Joseph C. Bryce, the governor’s chief legislative officer, disputed allegations that lawmakers want to unfairly cut taxes for casino operators shortly after raising taxes on many residents.

“No one should come away with the notion that somehow this is for corporate interests,” he said. “The state is going to introduce a competitor and take business from that facility. It is fair to reasonably compensate for that loss.”