The State of Illinois is joining the overall push to legalize the online gambling industry, as well as drive steady forays into the sports betting and daily fantasy sports segment. The news came on Friday with a newly-presented bill by the name of Senate Bill 7.
This particular piece of legislation doesn’t address a particular issue. Instead, it will attempt to tackle all problems of gambling head-on. Illinois will undertake to the bill to legalize all three forms of gaming. The State has not specified which verticals it may include, but it has left enough wriggle room to modify the bill as the need arises.
Changes Aplenty, When to Expect Them?
Illinois seems to be pushing strongly against pressing deadlines. Currently, in the House Gaming Subcommittee, a meeting is scheduled to take place on Monday. The proposal is supported by Republican Robert Rita who is also in charge of the Gaming Committee. With Mr Rita swinging behind the idea, it seems like the bill will have the legal heft to actually clear any hurdles up ahead.
Another likely scenario, however, is to see the bill temporarily put on the backburner and then revisited later in the year, as the PASPA’s aftermath settles.
The Idea Behind the Bill
As with other burgeoning efforts to legalize the industry, Illinois has decided to avoid taking stabs in the dark. Instead, the state will focus on establishing casinos in Chicago and use the city for the further expansion of the gambling industry – online and off the grid. In the current climate, all gambling activities have been outlawed as per federal ban, although local grassroots are just as keen on keeping gambling at bay.
What about Spots Betting?
Sports betting is an equally tight corner. The State of Illinois is not overly fond of supporting it, but with the recent repeal of a federal ban by a US Supreme Court, chances are that there may be a more palpable change of course.
Illinois is among the handful of states who have been deliberating whether to forge ahead with a sports betting bill as well, which gives industry proponents fresh reason to be optimistic.
The Daily Fantasy Conundrum
Daily Fantasy Sports has always been easier to defend. In simple terms, they have been pitched as a game of skill rather than what online gambling games are called, i.e. a game of chance.
The energy that has gone in legalizing DFS has definitely surpassed what endorsement sports betting and online gambling, in general, have enjoyed. It’s understandable, however, with DraftKings and FanDuel already serving the market.
The Big Changes Ahead
If Illinois manages to win the case for a legalized industry, it’s very likely that the state wouldn’t focus on one segment alone. The unified front that legislators have shown in favor of all segments of the industry is quite reassuring. Still, as the debate rages on, the chances for a unified front across the states are slim. PASPA or no PASPA, society itself remains divided over the issue.