Minnesota is inching closer to legalized sports betting as state legislators come forward with plans to bring a proposal before the State and Local Government Committee, according to a Star Tribune local report.
Senator Matt Klein plans to present a sports betting amendment that will “include help for the two tracks, but it doesn't include the sports betting licenses.” If adopted, the bill would move to several committees and would need to pass there before making its way to the state Senator for a vote, according to the report.
This is not the first time regulated sports betting has been a topic of discussion among state lawmakers. Minnesota has considered opening its commercial market in recent years. A push to legalize sports betting gained some traction earlier this session, but fizzled out until now.
Klein, along with Representative Zack Stephenson, had introduced a bill earlier this year to give local Tribes sports betting rights. Currently, Minnesota’s Tribes hold exclusive rights to offer local players access to casino gambling.
Klein said during a recent local news conference: "Minnesotans are demanding sports betting really and they are in many cases already accessing it on a black market.
"And much as with Sunday [liquor] sales a number of years ago, they often don't understand why their wishes are being obstructed by government and creating inconveniences in their lives."
Since the Supreme Court overturned PASPA in 2018, online gambling is currently available in more than 35 states, with 18 of those allowing for legal online sports wagering.