Lobbyists working toward legalizing online sports gambling have spent millions in recent years trying to move the betting ball over the goal line. In 2018, New Jersey legislators approved sports gambling in the Garden State. Many believed that would provide the momentum to push it past the pylon in the Empire State as well. It didn’t. Pro-gambling interests came up short in the last legislative session. However, 2021 could be a different story.
Siena College released a poll that shows public support for legalizing mobile sports betting is growing. In a November 24 release, Siena writes: “By a 50-32 percent margin, voters support online sports betting. The only previous time this issue was asked was February 2019, when voters were evenly divided 44-44 percent. While the biggest support for online sports betting is among men and voters under 35, a majority or plurality of Democrats, Republicans, independents, downstaters, and upstaters all support it. Voters 55 and older oppose it 49-31 percent.”
Public polling showing a slim majority approve of mobile sports betting and the state’s post-pandemic fiscal woes will make it extremely difficult to stop this gambling industry juggernaut. Even legislators who have previously opposed gambling expansion may be more inclined to pass mobile sports betting as the state is currently checking couch cushions for loose change. Anything can happen, though. Let’s pray that a strong goal line defense can stuff sports gambling lobbyists once again.
If you would like to voice your opposition to mobile sports betting, visit the Legislative Action Center at AlbanyUpdate.com.