N.C. likely to remain only East Coast state without a lottery. After two decades of losing, it finally looked like supporters of a lottery in North Carolina had themselves a winner. But the lottery now looks like a sure thing that started strong and faded down the stretch. A vote shy in the state Senate, supporters are coming up short against a coalition that has yet to back down. Unless leaders can shake loose one more "yes" vote, North Carolina appears all but certain to remain the only state on the East Coast without a lottery for another year. Lottery supporters won a House ballot in April by two votes, sending the lottery to the Senate. The Senate had historically supported a numbers game and is home to the closest allies of Democratic Governor Easley, an ardent lottery supporter. But opponents hold a 26-to-24 advantage in the chamber.