No Minnesota Sports Betting in 2023

A bill that would legalize sports betting in the state of Minnesota is still on the table, but it’s likely to stay on the table through the legislative session. There was a ton of optimism entering 2023 about the potential of legalizing sports betting, but all hope is now lost. 

Lawmakers are set to adjourn on Monday and the bill is currently sitting in committee in the House of Representatives. There have been several amendments made to the bill since it was originally introduced, and there just won’t be enough time to go over all of them. 

Sports betting is now a bipartisan issue in Minnesota, but that is also part of the current issue. The Democrats control the legislature, but a few of those Democrats have flipped to oppose the bill after getting some feedback from outside groups. 

The original bill would have legalized sports betting throughout the state, and given Native American tribes the power to rule the industry. Those tribes would have been able to partner with professional sports teams and also partner with sports betting operators to offer legal betting. 

This state should have been able to attract some big name sports betting operators, but those companies will not be able to have a chance to try to break into the state. 

Racetracks Still Want More

While the Native American tribes were going to be in control of sports betting with this proposal, those groups did make some concessions. Tribal leaders were willing to give up some of the control to race tracks in order to get a deal passed. 

Despite that concessions, horse racing tracks wanted an even bigger piece of the sports betting puzzle in the state. That is really where this bill started to fall apart a bit as there were a ton of lawmakers that listened to those lobbyists. 

If and when this sports betting bill gets reintroduced in the Minnesota government, this is always going to be a big topic of debate. 

2024 Could Be a Wash

Since this bill is technically not dead in the Minnesota government, it can be reintroduced at any time in 2024. The original bill has some language in it that can be easy to reuse the following year, but there is no guarantee of it passing next year either. 

2024 is going to be an election year, and that causes a number of issues for those that want to legalize sports betting. Some lawmakers are not going to be willing to make a big decision such as this, while others will simply want to be more focused on other things. 

Midwest Loaded With Sports Betting

There is now even more pressure on Minnesota to legalize sports betting as the state is surrounded by other states with sports betting. The Midwest portion of the United States has become a hotbed for legal sports betting, and Minnesota continues to lose millions of dollars each month. 

The professional sports teams in the state of Minnesota are missing out on some potential revenue as well, and those teams are starting to get frustrated. If lawmakers in the state are unable to come to an agreement soon, those teams might soon begin to look for other ways to legalize sports betting. 

If Minnesota is unable to pass a bill in 2024, it will be one of the few states without this industry.