I am a firm believer in letting adults of sound mind and judgement make their own decision regarding the amount and type of gambling they choose to partake in. Some people play the lottery, some video poker and some in other ways.
I will work tirelessly for the day when online sports gambling is legal in Illinois. There are many states that are on the forefront to challenging the federal law known as PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992) that outlaws sports gambling in most states. I believe that Illinois should be right there with New Jersey and Pennsylvania challenging this law.
Legalizing sports gambling will allow for a new stream of tax revenue that can help fund schools, healthcare, mental health and other services that the residents need.
People are betting online illegally every day across America. Anyone can use their credit card to place an illegal bet.
Why shouldn’t the state get its share instead of the money being sent overseas?
A March 2017 USA Today article I read said that the American Gaming Association estimates that $10.4 BILLION in bets were placed in the USA during March Madness, of which only $295 million in bets were legally placed in Nevada. They estimate 97% of bets were placed illegally. If the states were able to tax this $10 billion in illegal bets—on this event alone, think about what could be done to provide services for people.
Opponents may say, "what about those that may become addicted?" We would need to set up the correct support services to help these people. Just like alcohol, gambling in a casino, on horses or the lottery, there is a segment of the population that may become addicted. I want to bring this shadow world into the open, which will benefit all parties involved.