California tribes lobbying against online sportsbetting legalization measure

Home » California tribes lobbying against online sportsbetting legalization measure

In the western American state of California and a pair of tribal-led organizations have reportedly come out against a November ballot referendum that is seeking to legalize online sportsbetting.

According to a Thursday report from SportsHandle.com, the Californians for Tribal Sovereignty and Safe Gaming lobby group is opposing the upcoming Proposition 27 move as it believes the measure’s passage would put tribal sovereignty and self-determination at risk. The source detailed that this group embraces almost 40 parties including some of the state’s largest aboriginal casino operators such as the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, the Rincon Band of Luiseno Indians and the Pala Band of Mission Indians.

Jurisdictional justification:

The Chairman for the Cahuilla Band of Indians, Daniel Salgado (pictured), reportedly declared that his tribe joined the Californians for Tribal Sovereignty and Safe Gaming group owing to its belief that the passage of Proposition 27 would ‘take away a tribe’s sovereign right to choose’ whether it offered sportsbetting. He purportedly went on to pronounce that his tribe’s Cahuilla Casino in rural Riverside County is a small affair with ‘limited gaming’ and not as large as the nearby 1,100-room Pechanga Resort Casino from the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians or the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians’ Las Vegas-style Yaamava’ Resort and Casino at San Manuel.

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Reportedly read a statement from Salgado…

“We look at how many people are actually going to participate and there are a little over 60 tribes that offer gaming facilities. So those who don’t participate can’t be a part of this and, when you look at limited gaming tribes like ours, we’re forced to make a determination. On the other side, on the operator perspective, they’ve made the criteria so limiting that there will likely only be a dozen.”

Allied attempt:

Reportedly joining this group in its opposition to Proposition 27 is the rival Stop the Corporate Online Gambling Prop enterprise, which is being backed by some 50 California tribes or affiliated organizations including the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians and the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. Although it is unclear as to why the two efforts haven’t merged, some less prominent tribes have purportedly leant support to both efforts.

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Anticipating abstentions:

Interestingly, SportsHandle.com reported that three unnamed smaller tribes have eschewed membership of either of these groups while lobbying in favor of the passage of Proposition 27. This trio is purportedly thought to be interested in landing big deals with one of the seven corporate backers of the referendum, which encompass DraftKings Incorporated, FanDuel Group, Fanatics Incorporated, Bally’s Corporation, MGM Resorts International, Penn National Gaming Incorporated and Wynn Resorts Limited.

Second scheme:

Adding to all of this and a third lobby group, Taxpayers Against Special Interest Monopolies, has reportedly been established to fight the November passage of the tribal-backed Proposition 26, which would legalize retail sportsbetting across ‘The Golden State’. The membership of this organization purportedly includes multiple California cities alongside numerous card rooms who claim the legitimizing move runs counter to the state’s constitution and would financially damage communities from San Diego to Smith River.

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Dogged disagreement:

The Taxpayers Against Special Interest Monopolies enterprise reportedly used an official Wednesday press release to allege that the passage of Proposition 26 would put ‘more than 32,000 jobs, $1.6 billion in wages and $5.5 billion in total economic impact at risk.’ California’s tribes and card rooms have purportedly long been fighting over who should have the right to operate legal gambling while the lobby group claimed that the legalization of in-person sportsbetting would endanger revenues cities already rely on ‘for resident services such as public safety, housing and homeless programs.’

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