Friday, July 24, 2009

The Issue of Legalized Sports Betting

Today, all four sports leagues and the NCAA have sued to ban Delaware from legalizing sports betting. Now, Delaware is one of four states that are allowed to have sports betting, along with Nevada (obviously), Oregon, and Montana since they had sports gaming laws in the books before Congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 1992, officially banning states from starting gaming laws. Since then, Nevada has been the one state to have sportsbooks, while all other wagering have been through bookies, either traditional bookies or Internet gaming sites.

Then, Delaware's Gov. Jack Markell led the charge to legalize sports betting in his state and it was approved, despite opposition from the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB and the NCAA. Gov. Jon Corzine of New Jersey has now lobbied to have all states have betting on games, mainly since Atlantic City would be the biggest victim if Delaware is successful in doing this. The sports leagues don't want more gaming because they believe that would garner more of a microscopic view of each and every call.

To be fair, the leagues have a point, every call will be looked at more closely if more people are betting. However, I believe it's easier to control sports betting if it's legal and there will be added tax revenues because people love to gamble. So, I'm hoping that one day, I can go to a place in New York that will take sports bets as easy as it is to place horse bets at OTB, or the very least, drive to a casino in Atlantic City, Delaware, or Connecticut at an official sportsbook.

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