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California Voters to Determine Sports Betting Fate

California Voters to Determine Sports Betting Fate

by Ryan BurksJuly 1, 2022

Lawmakers in the state of California have been unable to get enough support to get a sports betting bill passed. Other groups then took it upon themselves to make a move, and it has created a huge battle in the state.

There will be two ballot measures that appear on the ballot for voters in November after a push from sports betting operators was approved. Some of the biggest names in online sports betting worked together to form a group to make a push to get online sports betting legalized.

That initiative was approved earlier this week, and it is backed by DraftKings and FanDuel to name a few operators. This is also in direct conflict to another ballot measure that will appear, and that one was created by the Native American tribes in the state.

California could become the biggest sports betting market in the United States if online sports betting is approved. Not only does this state have close to 40 million people, but it is also loaded with professional and college teams.

New York has taken over the top spot, and the numbers coming out of that state have been staggering. It’s unclear what the voters in California will decide to do, but at least they will have the option for once.

Tribes Want Total Control

The Native American tribes in the state of California started working on this initiative back in 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic kept them from collecting the required amount of signatures. This group wants all of the betting to be done at tribal casinos, which would allow them to keep all of the profits.

This battle is expected to heat up over the next few months, and the tribes actually took the first shot with an advertisement. A TV ad is now being seen throughout California that takes a shot at Jason Robins, CEO of DraftKings.

The tribes are not opposed to working with sports betting operators in the future through a partnership, but they want to be in control of all of the fundings. These leaders argue that they should have full control over this industry, but it’s now going to be up to the people to decide.

Both Could Be Legal

Sports betting operators believe that both ballot measures can pass, and that the two sides can work together to find a solution. According to California law, this could actually take place from a legal standpoint, as long as the bills didn’t work against each other.

The Native American tribes are not willing to compromise in this situation, and they have already threatened legal action if both ballot measures are passed. With the vote coming in November of this year, there is a chance that California could enter the legal sports betting industry at some point in 2023, but it’s unclear what it will look like.

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About The Author
Ryan Burks
Ryan has been writing sports betting content and industry news pieces for more than 3 years. He stays on top of all of the latest industry news as well as providing sports betting strategy articles and opinion pieces. Ryan is a former college basketball player and someone that continues to participate in sports to this day. He is a die-hard fan of the Chicago Cubs and Chicago Blackhawks and also roots for the Fighting Illini. Ryan currently resides in Illinois.