Is Sports Betting Legal in Mississippi?
The speed with which some states are moving forward with legalized sports betting is truly mind-blowing. Once it looked inevitable that PASPA was going to be struck down by the United States Supreme Court, representatives from a handful of states began positioning themselves with bills to bring to their fellow congressmen. The work started well before that for some. Mississippi was one of those states.
In the state of Mississippi, betting is just about ready to go, just a month removed from the landmark Supreme Court decision. Mississippi is one of the few southeastern states that has truly embraced gambling in all of its forms and took some pretty significant preemptive measures last year. Per the Clarion Ledger on May 14, Mississippi had already deleted a piece of law that banned betting on anything that took place outside of casinos.
It was almost a cloak-and-dagger sort of move, which was remarkably ironic for those that have followed online poker from its heyday to its darkest day, when the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act was shoved into essentially the small print of an anti-terrorism bill. Some representatives didn’t even know that tidbit was in the bill, which was written to allow for regulation of fantasy sports. It was some measure of revenge, albeit on a state level, for those who were badly shaken by Black Monday.
In any event, Mississippi is virtually ready to go and it seems like they will hit their targeted goals of 45 to 60 days before the start of the new football season.
Recent News Stories About Betting
Columnist Mac Gordon wrote a strong op/ed piece in early June for the Clarion Ledger about sports betting and its longstanding place in both Mississippi and other states.
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant discussed the state budget and the state’s infrastructure needs with Geoff Pender regarding the windfalls that sports betting could provide.
In some states, there are some questions about how Native American tribes will take to sports betting and an expansion of gambling. In Mississippi, it will be the Choctaw tribe that takes the first legal bets at Pearl River Resort and Bok Homa Casino per MS News Now.
Caesars is going to operate the sportsbook at Harrah’s Gulf Coast and the Horseshoe Tunica, with an opening date set for mid-August.
Well, not much to add here. Sports betting has come to Mississippi. Hopefully this will revitalize Tunica and will serve as an important measuring stick that the other southeastern states can use for comparison purposes.