The option to legalize sports gambling is now in the hands of Minnesota lawmakers after the Supreme Court on Monday banished a federal law that stopped most states from doing so.
By a vote of 6-3, the Supreme Court eliminated the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, a federal law in place since 1992 that allowed only a handful of states to offer sports betting.
Of those, Nevada is the only one that has legal sports pools, while Oregon, Delaware and Montana are allowed sports lotteries.
BMTN discussed in January what the Supreme Court's decision could mean for Minnesota, after an ABC News report listed Minnesota among 18 states that could introduce a bill to keep sports gambling illegal.
Leading the charge is Rep. Pat Garofalo (R-Farmington), who was already planning to introduce a bill that would legalize sports gambling beyond what's currently allowed (online gambling via fantasy sites like DraftKings and FanDuel).
After learning of the law being banned by the Supreme Court, Garofalo released a statement, applauding the vote for bringing "sports gambling into the 21st century."
"For too long, Minnesotans wanting to engage in sports gambling have had to rely on an unregulated and unsafe black market. That’s why it is imperative that we move as quickly as possible to ensure a fair and transparent sports gambling infrastructure is in place in Minnesota. Over the last 6 months, I've worked with interested parties to allow for safe, fair and legalized sports gambling in our state. I will continue this work of finding a resolution as soon as possible."
Garofalo is expected to introduce a bill on Tuesday.
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Wider legalization and regulation of sports gambling in Minnesota would bring in an extra $100 million in tax revenue a year, according to sports attorney Aalok Sharma in a recent Star Tribune article.
The Supreme Court's Monday ruling is the result of New Jersey challenging the 1992 act, arguing that the law was unconstitutional.