California is the latest state to step up and prepare for the eventuality of legal sports betting in the United States with a proposal to amend its constitution to allow bookies to roam free across the Golden State. But before you start dreaming of placing parlays by the beach, you’ll have to wait for the Supreme Court to settle the matter.
Late Thursday afternoon, California Assemblyman Adam Gray introduced a measure that would allow California operators to offer sports betting, but only if the Supreme Court overturns the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). That, of course, will likely only happen if the state of New Jersey wins its epic case in front of the Supreme Court later this year.
California now joins Connecticut and Mississippi in the group of states that are actively preparing a future that involves legal sports betting.
In a press release, reported on by Legal Sports Report, Gray said what pretty much everyone in the United States already knows about sports betting saying:
Whether we like it or not, Californians are already betting on sports through illegal and often unscrupulous websites in foreign countries. It is time to bring this multibillion dollar industry out of the shadows. We need to crack down on illegal and unregulated online gaming and replace it with a safe and responsible option which includes safeguards against compulsive and underage gambling, money laundering, and fraud.
Of course California’s track record for introducing new gambling products is something less than spectacular. State officials have been working on legalized online poker for more than half a decade and have absolutely nothing to show for their work. Stay tuned.