What Does 2020 Hold For Sports Betting?
It was back in 2018 that the Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act which had been in place since 1992. This seemed to open the door for states to legalize sports betting and give fans access to online betting sites.
This has proven to be the case in 20 states so far. The previous ban on sports betting in those states has been lifted. Google had also recently lifted its ban on the advertising of sports betting in states including Indiana, Iowa, Montana, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and New Jersey.
The tech giant seems to recognise the need for online betting and gambling advertising as it is also about to lift its ban on online casino advertising. This is in recognition of the legalization of online casino play in some states, as offered by gaming software providers like NetEnt. These casinos provide a varied gaming experience as can be seen here on this website.
Given this more open online casino and sports betting environment it's surprising that California is yet to decide on its own sports betting legalisation. The state that so often leads the way is not doing so in this case.
California slow to legalize sports betting online
There is no doubt that the journey towards legal sports betting in California has made slow progress so far. In order for legalization to happen, there needs to be a ballot where a constitutional amendment is supported by voters.
There have been attempts to make this happen when Assemblyman Adam Gray tried to introduce a CA sports betting bill in 2016 and a constitutional amendment in 2017. Both of these attempts resulted in a dead end.
An initiative was also filed by 18 of the leading Indian tribes in the state. This initiative proposed that sports betting would only be able to take place in tribal casinos and at racetracks, and not online.
What is the future for legalized sports betting in California?
2020 could be the year when there is real progress in the journey to legalizing sports betting in California. Although, there is still a long way to go.
The most recent step in the journey took place on January 8, in Sacramento. This was the date when the California Joint Committee on Governmental Organization informational hearing on legal sports wagering took place.
The major point to emerge from the hearing was that all parties present believed that unfettered mobile with no in-person registration is the best way forward, if sports betting is to be successful in the state.
Now, it's up to lawmakers to decide the best way to take this forward. It remains to be seen how long this process takes. However, it seems that there is an appetite to join other states in accepting the growing popularity of online sports and casino betting that has happened since 2018. It will be interesting to see whether 2020 is the year when real legal progress is made.