Sports betting legalization seemed to boom in 2021. Seven different states passed legislation to welcome sportsbooks, whether commercial, tribal, or both. However, there had been a bit of a lull since we brought in the new year.
But the spring has brought about a slight turn of events in which several regions have shown a sudden interest in domestic betting.
Legal Sports Betting Bill Regains Traction
Now, it seems that Minnesota could very soon join the growing list of US legal sports betting states after a surprising vote from lawmakers on Thursday night. On Thursday night, lawmakers in the House passed HF778 with a tight majority of 70-57.
The bill is set to head immediately over to a Senate committee for review. If the Senate convenes for a vote before Minnesota’s legislative session comes to a close, the measure could be authorized as law by the summer.
This is great news for bettors and eligible operators. Still, the odds of securing legalization for 2022 are remarkably slim.
More Hurdles For Minnesota Sports Betting
Despite favorability in the House, HF778 faces two key obstacles:
- The state’s Senate has only ten days to come to a resolution on Minnesota’s legal sports betting bill. The legislative session ends on May 23rd, leaving little time for negotiations.
- The majority of Minnesota’s Senate is, at present, against the prospect of handing sportsbook exclusivity to the tribes. This provision remains at the core of the House betting measure and is expected to cause conflict.
While it isn’t impossible to organize a vote in ten days, there is a strong lack of unity behind HF778. Without a general consensus on the issue, it is more than likely that the bill will fail.
Bad Odds With A Staunch Senate
The terms of HF778 delegate all in-person and legal mobile sports betting privileges to the state’s tribes. Furthermore, mobile wagers would be taxed at 10%.
If passed, Minnesota will not be the first state to have taken this route. However, legalizing such a measure could risk triggering legal action from other gaming establishments as seen in Florida.
From the beginning, the Senate has been very clear in that it wants any prospective sports betting bills to be inclusive of race tracks and professional stadiums.
The chamber’s revisions and amendments for HF778 will be extensive. Even then, it still may not be enough to secure a majority vote.
But that doesn’t mean Minnesotans are out of luck!
Practice Makes Perfect, Even In Office
Every legislative attempt to authorize state-licensed sports betting affords lawmakers the opportunity to learn more about the complexities of this industry.
Even if state-licensed betting isn’t legalized this year, bettors can mobilize in preparation for the next. Better yet, sports fans can still bet on the year’s biggest games and events using offshore online sportsbooks.
Having been a legal access point for bettors long before PASPA’s overturn in 2018, offshore sportsbook sites remain the most reliable way to wager no matter where you are.
For more information, be sure to check out our betting how-to guides!
Source: CBS Minnesota