Will Sports Betting Arrive in Texas?

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Over the past few years, a growing number of states across the country have approved new laws to legalize and regulate sports betting. This all started thanks to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) being ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 2018. PASPA had stood since 1992 when the federal government looked for a way to protect the integrity of sports across the country. However, several states, such as Nevada, were excluded from the law, and this was challenged in court in 2018.

After PASPA was overturned, states have been free to set their own laws on sports betting, and you can now bet in places such as New Jersey, Virginia, Ohio and many more. Virginia online sports betting has helped to significantly increase the amount of tax revenue in the state, and legal betting has largely been seen as a positive. So the question that many sports fans in Texas want to know is, will it ever be legal here?

Making the Case for Legal Sports Betting

While sports betting might have been illegal across much of the US for a number of years, it didn’t necessarily stop people from betting. Thanks to the growth of the internet and online sportsbooks, many people were still able to sign up and place bets online. These sites were mostly based overseas, and there were few protections for bettors to ensure they were treated fairly.

Legalizing sports betting may have increased the number of people betting and made it much easier, but it’s also increased the protection that bettors have. Those that are in legal states can now easily sign up to licensed and regulated sportsbooks, and it’s even possible to sign up and bet if you’re just visiting a state where betting is legal.

Aside from being safer, legalized sports betting has also helped states grow their budget as they earn more tax revenue. In previous years, money lost by bettors online was mostly flowing out of the country, while it can now be taxed and used to improve local communities. Tax rates vary depending on the state, but most states that have introduced a regulated betting market have seen major improvements.

Finally, there’s a case for allowing sports betting simply because it’s a freedom that sports fans should be able to enjoy. While excessive gambling can lead to problems, people should have the freedom and responsibility to be able to make that choice for themselves. In the meantime, licensed states are obligated to offer problem gamblers support and resources to help them if they need it.

The Push for Legal Betting in Texas

Texas is a state with a population of close to thirty million people, a large percentage of which are crazy about sports. Football is by far the biggest sport in the state, but there are plenty of basketball, baseball and NASCAR fans too. It’s no surprise then that there have been calls for Texas to legalize sports betting, especially after seeing the positive effect on other states.

So far, there have been multiple attempts at passing sports betting bills in Texas, though all have failed. On previous attempts, the House has voted in favor of legal betting, but it’s been far more of a challenge to find support in the Senate. Based on the current political climate, it may not be the most pressing issue, but some lawmakers are still hopeful.

It’s hard to say what the future will hold in terms of legal sports betting in Texas. However, it’s hard to see reasons against it right now. It would help increase tax revenue, benefitting communities all over Texas. In addition, it would help make watching teams like the Cowboys, Astros and Rockets even more exciting. 

-In collaboration with AWISE

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