American Gaming Association (AGA) Senior Vice President of Public Affairs, Sara Rayme released the following statement after the Nevada Gaming Control Board announced that a record $ 138.48 million was bet on Super Bowl 51 at Nevada sports books:
“Even as Nevada sports books break records, the amount wagered legally pales in comparison to the thriving illegal market, in which fans just bet $ 4.5 billion on the big game. After 25 years of a failing federal ban, it’s time for Congress to take a commonsense approach to sports betting that generates revenue, protects consumers and helps fans engage with the games they enjoy.”
Last week, AGA released estimates that showed Americans were poised to bet $ 4.7 billion on Super Bowl 51. Yet 97 percent of bets – approximately $ 4.5 billion – would be placed illegally.
The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA, dictates that Nevada is the only state permitted to offer traditional sports betting. Despite this ban, sports betting has only grown more prevalent. In fact, in 2016 alone, Americans wagered an estimated $ 154 billion on all sports, nearly all of it through bookies and offshore, illicit web sites.
Further, the United States Supreme Court is considering hearing a sports betting case that could dramatically alter the country’s sports betting landscape. Earlier this year, the Court asked the U.S. Solicitor General to submit a brief in the New Jersey-led sports betting petition. AGA previously submitted an amicus brief urging the Court to consider the failed, unconstitutional sports betting ban.
Fans who want to help lift the federal ban can join the grassroots campaign at SportsBettingInAmerica.com.