Legal Sports Betting
While there is still some disagreement over whether or not sports betting should be legalized in the US, there are already several states that have adopted legislation that allows it. Many sports leagues and professional sports organizations, such as the NBA, MLB, and PGA Tour, have lobbied for the regulation of sports betting, and in January, these organizations produced a “Model Legislation” for the state legislatures to review.
New Jersey spearheaded the push to repeal PASPA, arguing that the law discriminated against 46 states. While the NCAA and professional sports leagues fought against legalized sports betting, the Supreme Court ruled in May 2018 that PASPA was unconstitutional. While not all states have legalized sports betting, the majority of them have legalized it. The only question that remains is how to define “legal” sports betting in these states.
The state of Nevada, for example, is one of the only states to offer legal sports betting, though only a handful of casinos currently do. The state’s casinos have been the state’s largest source of revenue, so any additional taxes on sports betting would benefit local economies. However, New Hampshire is an exception. The state’s laws allow for only one sports book provider, so DraftKings emerged as the sole online provider.
States With Legal Sports Betting
Michigan has joined the list of states with legal sports betting. In November 2018, the state’s Senate and House passed a law allowing sports betting online. The state’s Governor Bill Lee, however, vetoed the bill because he doesn’t believe expanding sports betting would be in the best interests of the state. He also acknowledges that the issue of gambling addiction has affected many local economies. A mobile sportsbook in Michigan won’t be available until 2021. Mississippi has also recently legalized the industry. But it is limited to land-based casinos, and there are no plans to offer it on the mobile platform.
In October 2018, Michigan became the 16th state to legalize sports betting. It is a day after Illinois, but it was halted after a lawsuit was filed. Despite the legalization of sports betting in Michigan, the state is still in the process of developing a mobile product. In the meantime, however, Mississippi’s pro-sports teams will continue to push for the legalization of sports betting in the state.
In March 2019, two state legislators introduced the ACA 16 ballot initiative to legalize sports betting in Illinois. The legislation would amend the state’s constitution. The law would require 2/3 votes from the legislature, which was not easy. A similar proposal has already been approved by the governor. Its upcoming election will determine the future of the industry in the U.S. The ACA 16 proposal would allow the wagering industry to operate in any state, regardless of where it is located.