The U.S. gambling industry won big at the polls Tuesday, with three states authorizing legal sports betting and three others either approving or expanding casino gambling.
In addition to Louisiana, where most parishes voted to allow sports wagering, both Maryland and South Dakota approved sports betting. That sets up a situation in which by the end of next year more than half the country could have legal sports betting, less than three years after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling cleared the way for all 50 states to adopt it if they chose.
Virginia approved casino gambling in four locations, Nebraska authorized adding casino games at its horse racing tracks, and Colorado expanded the number and type of casino games it can offer, along with eliminating some wagering limits.
“It appears that Americans are becoming increasingly comfortable with legalized gambling,” said David Schwartz, a gambling historian with the University of Nevada Las Vegas. “The addition of casinos in Virginia and racetrack casinos in Nebraska indicates that casino-style gambling is on the upswing as well. We have reached a point where voters seem satisfied that legalizing gambling will offer positive returns for their state.”
The American Gaming Association, the casino industry’s main trade group, hailed the expansion votes. By the end of 2021, at least 25 states and the District of Columbia could have legal sports betting in place. Read the full story.