Lawmakers In Missouri Are Shooting For Legal Sports Betting In 2020:
Neighboring states of Missouri already have legal sports betting, like Iowa, Arkansas and soon Illinois and Colorado. It’s an argument that is regularly made now, if the next state in line doesn’t legalize sports betting they will lose money plain and simple. Data suggests that is indeed true, people cross state lines daily to place their sports bets. The Supreme Court in a landmark decision overturned a nationwide ban on sports betting. The decision came down in 2018, and since that time 20 states have legalized sports betting one form or another.
Lawmakers in Missouri started pushing the effort to get sports betting legalized shortly after the Supreme Court decision. Despite persuasive arguments, those advocating for sports betting in the ‘Show Me’ state, haven’t been able to achieve movement in the past two legislative sessions. Once again lawmakers are being asked to look at the merits of sports betting and move the bill along. The House Committee on Government Oversight considered two bills on Tuesday, some sources are reporting that the conversation on Tuesday was positive
Most Of The Speakers At The Tuesday Session Spoke Favorably About Sports Betting
Most of the invited speakers at the House session on Tuesday had only positive things to say about the benefits of sports betting. However, there are some bones of contention, that some suggest are the reasons for the delay. .Some casinos, sports league owners, and a few lawmakers are raising serious issues that they say are very relevant. The two authors and sponsors of the bills are, Republican Congressman Cody Smith of Carthage and Republican Congressman Phil Christofanelli of St. Peters, Missouri.
The two bills do differ a bit and has split who favors it right down the middle. The basic issues of the bills are that it would allow sports betting at casinos and other authorized locations. Sports leagues have thrown their support towards Smith’s bill, with casinos favoring Christofanelli’s bill. The big difference between the two bills are, that Smith’s bill requires sportsbooks to use data provided by leagues and the other bill has no such requirements.
Sports Leagues Lobbyists Are Throwing Their Hats In The Sports Betting Ring Too
Sports league lobbyist Jeremy Kudon represents the interests of the NBA, MLB, and the PGA Tour. Kudon said leagues favor Congressman Smith’s bill over the other one because the data coming from leagues will assure the integrity of games. Specifically, Kudon said, “Christofanelli’s bill “is a love letter to casinos, while Smith’s bill recognizes all stakeholders in the process, including the leagues.”
The St. Louis Cardinals and the St. Louis Blues sent their lobbyist to the House session on Tuesday. The stakes are obviously very high, said a source, ‘there are millions and millions of dollars on the line.’ Kudon added, “Data is to sports betting what cards are to blackjack or what that little metal ball is to roulette.” Kudon added that in order to get sports betting passed in Missouri ‘casinos will have to be a little more flexible.’