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Should We Allow Sports Gaming in Delaware?

February 9, 2009

In short, yes we should examine the options available to us under federal law but first let’s make sure we understand what sports gaming is not. It is not going to make the State of Delaware a “bookie” or some sort of unfettered format to wage bets on anything at anytime.
Sports gaming would have to live under federal restrictions making it a format to place ‘parlay’ bets. Parlay bets are favored by casual players or bettors with limited bankrolls because they pay odds on picking the outcome. For instance, a two-team parlay usually pays 13-5, while a three-team parlay pays 6-1.
Take a look at to get an understanding of how limited this option would be.
Also, how can Delaware permit sports gaming?
Although a 1992 federal law prohibits betting on sporting events, Delaware is one of four states that have a “grandfather” exemption because it tinkered with a sports lottery in the 1970s. Nevada, currently the only state that operates legal sports books, Oregon and Montana, also are exempt from the federal ban.
Now, for those who say we should not be a ‘gambling’ state, it is too late for that question. Take a look:
In fiscal year 2007, the Lottery’s contribution was $256.7 million, making it the state’s fourth-largest revenue generator.
The General Fund is the pool of dollars that finances the majority of state services in Delaware, including:

  • Public and higher education
    Health and social services
    Public safety
    Judicial and corrections
    Child, youth and family services
    Natural resources and environmental control

Of course the amounts to be “made” from sports gaming is unknown but it would certainly be an added draw for the other existing facilities in Delaware.
Essential to this proposal would have to be a small percentage set aside for problem gamblers.
Finally, many will make the moral argument that gaming is  counterproductive, evil and will hurt Delawareans. Part of life is making personal choices and assuming responsibility for those choices. Many Delawareans choose to smoke, drive at excessive speeds and not maintain a healthy weight or exercise program. That is their choice with its own personal consequences.
Sports gaming should be evaluated on the merits, short term and long term.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Families First permalink
    February 9, 2009 4:01 pm

    Gaming will produce money for Delaware but at what cost?

    If it will stop a tax increase, fine but otherwise I am not so sure.

  2. Gone Fishin permalink
    February 9, 2009 4:07 pm

    Gambling is going to happen anyway why not make some money off of it?

  3. Karl Marx permalink
    February 11, 2009 2:57 pm

    Make the greedy corporations Delaware gets to find a refuge here to pay their fair share.

    We don’t need gambling.

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