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Alabama Closes Legislative Session Without Vote On Sports Betting Bill

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A local news source reported that Alabama lawmakers ended their legislative session without voting on a sports betting and casino initiative.

The Senate ultimately passed a lighter gambling bill that only included a state-regulated lottery and machines where players could bet on replays of horse races. A conference committee suggested a compromise that would have brought slot machines to seven locations in the state, but lawmakers also discarded the notion.

Current Alabama Governor Kay Ivey told reporters she was disappointed that the bill was not put on the ballot for state citizens to vote upon. She said a special session on the subject would be pointless since lawmakers can’t agree.

Some Senators argue that Alabama residents travel to nearby states to bet on sports, which benefits the state in no way. Other senators seem to like the way things are and have no plans to open the traditional southern state to new gambling policies.

Alabama residents have not voted on gambling expansion since 1999, when state voters rejected a state lottery.

Are Online Sportsbooks Available In Alabama?

Money in handDespite what you may have heard, online sports betting sites operating out of state are available in Alabama. Since no federal or state laws make online sports gambling illegal, Alabama residents can bet on sports online from whichever site they choose.

However, it is important to only gamble at licensed sports betting sites that trusted gaming commissions regulate. Licensed sportsbook sites offer players protection, trust, and oversight. Legitimate regulators will regularly check that the odds are fair and the online security protocols are working correctly.

Will Alabama Ever Pass A Sports Betting Bill?

The stereotype that Southerners are slow rings true with sports betting bills, as only a handful of states have not jumped on the bandwagon.

Since the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was repealed in 2018 by the Supreme Court, more than 38 states and Washington D.C. have domestic sports betting options for their residents. Only a handful of states in the South and West have not passed any domestic sports betting laws.

While it seems unlikely that Alabama will ever pass a domestic sports betting bill, the fact that the issue keeps coming up provides a glimmer of hope. Things just take a little longer in the old south.

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