Following a more than 100 days strike by union members over no health and pensions benifits, Trump Taj Mahal closed down on Monday. The casino, which costed nearly 1 billion dollars and opened 26 years ago, was once called "the eighth wonder of the world" by former owner and republican president candidate Donald Trump.
"There's no reason for this," Trump told The Associated Press in a recent interview while his friend and current Taj Mahal owner Carl Icahn made preparations to close down the casino. Trump, who took his casinos in Atlantic City through bankruptcy four times, said that it would be too expensive to ever reopen it once it closed. However, many striking workers and the union's president Bob McDevitt suspect that the casino will be opened again in the near future.
"There's a strong possibility that Icahn will keep the casino closed over the winter while conducting renovations and capital improvements, then attempt to reopen it in the spring as a non-union facility, "McDevitt said. "Union job actions including picketing and a campaign to get convention groups to patronize other Atlantic City casinos would immediately resume if the Taj attempts to reopen without a union contract."
Many striking workers interviewed on Monday told reporters that they did the right thing standing up to a billionaire to restore health insurance and pension benefits that were terminated two years ago in bankruptcy court.
Taj Mahal is the fifth Atlantic City casino to close its doors since 2014. Approximately 11,000 workers, including the 3,000 workers at Taj Mahal, have lost their jobs due to the "casino crisis" in Atlantic City.