MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama lawmakers return to Montgomery on Monday to begin a special session focused on the possibility of a state lottery.
Gov. Robert Bentley told The Associated Press that he is "reasonably optimistic" about getting a lottery bill approved.
The governor calls a lottery the only option left to provide more money to the state's cash-strapped Medicaid program.
But some key lawmakers say a lottery faces tough odds of winning approval.
Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh gave the bill a slightly better than 50-50 chance of winning approval. He said it would be a close vote in the Senate.
There are two lottery bills up for debate. One would authorize a lottery. Another would also allow electronic lottery machines at state dog tracks.
Alabama is one of six states without a lottery.