Holy crap! Pigs are flying! Or maybe they finally realized that jails were getting too full and people decided to stop imprisoning people based on stupid laws.
Delaware, the second smallest state after Rhode Island, has voted and passed Sports Betting and Table games as legal in the state. This proposal, by the governor of the state Jack Markell, endured a more than 90-hour negotiation tussle to come to terms on the newly charged licensing fees and increased shares of their handle with local racinos (horse-racing tracks which also carry video slot machines). Afterwards the vote passed fairly quickly (under 30 minutes) and with an overwhelming majority, 17-2.
This does mean that the gambling is statewide. In other words, you can bet on outcomes of sporting events, but only legally do so in places authorized by the State of Delaware in Delaware, such as at the racetracks, brick and mortar casinos, etc. This bill is expected to bring in about USD 50M in tax collection in its first month alone.
And now a history lesson. In 1992 the US Congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which banned individual states from being in the gambling and bookie business. At the time the act was passed, only 4 states already had laws in place for gambling. These sates were Nevada, Oregon, Montana and Delaware.
In 2007, Oregon rescinded its status in order to bring back collegiate sports postseason to the state. In passing the law, Delaware loses NCAA eligibility for hosting postseason games in the state. The governor of the state of Delaware argues that Montana, who also has a local sports lottery (sports-betting) can host postseason NCAA games perfectly fine.
Additionally, Delaware also has the unique competitive advantage of being the only state east of the Mississippi where you can get your gamble on legally. Can you say Road Trip? If everything goes as planned, the table games such as blackjack, poker and craps will also proliferate in the state by the end of the year.
A state senator of New Jersey, next door neighbors to Delaware, has also expressed interest in legalization of sports betting. Sounds very interesting…