Senate Democats are their allies spent the weekend furiously whipping votes in hopes of landing the 32 yeses necessary to pass the NYC OTB bailout bill when lawmakers return to Albany tomorrow for a last-ditch attempt to prevent the downstate gambling operation from closing.

As the DN’s Ken Lovett reported this morning, DC37, which represents the workers slated to lose their jobs if NYC OTB shuts down tomorrow night, focused on pressuring NYC senators to support the bill, while NYRA and horse breeders lobbied the upstate members.

Senate insiders estimated the Democrats need anywhere from five to seven votes from the other side of the aisle to pass the measure. (That factors in a likely no-show by outgoing Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada Jr., who didn’t show up at last week’s lame duck session).

They’re counting on the three NYC Republicans – outgoing Sen. Frank Padavan and Sens. Marty Golden and Andy Lanza – along with Sen. Roy McDonald, who told CapTon’s Kaitlyn Ross last week that he would be holding his nose to vote “yes.”

Of that group, only McDonald has publicly said he’d be willing to vote for the bailout bill negotiated by the Paterson administration. But Democats hope McDonald’s public “yes” will provide some impetus for “soft” upstaters like Sens. Neil Breslin, Dave Valesky and (outgoing) Darrel Aubertine to follow suit.

Lanza unveiled a “compromise” bailout bill over the weekend that would extend assistance to the suburban and regional betting parlors not included in the NYC OTB measure.

The Democrats and some in the racing industry rejected it out of hand, with one senator calling the measure “cover” for Republicans.

The Republicans, meanwhile, are insisting there’s sufficient Democratic support for the bill to see it pass if it’s allowed to come to the floor tomorrow. Capital District OTB CEO/President John Signor is on TALK 1300 AM at the moment voicing support for the bill, adding: “We hope that a compromise can be made here where the other OTBs can be included.”

The problem with that bill, of course, is it’s not what the Assembly passed last week. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has shown no sign of being open to returning to Albany before the end of the year.