West Virginia approves presidential election betting

President Donald J. Trump

Authorities in West Virginia have approved wagering on the presidential election marking the first time in US history that sportsbooks will be legally allowed to offer odds on the political contest. 

Having been a popular market in Europe in recent times, the US presidential election has never been approved within the region until now. 

Despite having pulled down its odds after roughly 15 minutes, Tuesday saw the FanDuel Sportsbook offer odds on the election in West Virginia for the first time ever as a result of the West Virginia Lottery’s approval. 

In a statement given to The Action Network, FanDuel said: “While the markets were approved, the West Virginia Lottery has asked FanDuel to refrain from offering the markets until they have time to fully work through the implications of this new market offering.”

It is believed that at least one bet was registered on FanDuel’s Presidential Election markets prior to the sportsbook removing both its odds and Politics tab from its site and app. 

2020 Presidential Election winner, 2020 Democratic nominee winner, the winning party of 2020 U.S. Presidential Election and Democratic Vice President Nominee were the categories that had been approved and made available to bet on. 

Speaking to Legal Sports Report, a West Virginia Lottery spokesperson commented:  “It is my understanding that we were asked by the sportsbooks to allow betting on the presidential election and it is being reviewed. I think possibly someone jumped before being given an approval.”

As of yet it remains unclear as to whether other legal online sportsbooks will join FanDuel in offering presidential election odds.

Matt Kalish, President of DraftKings North America, added: “While we are excited about the possibility of offering odds on politics and elections to our customers in West Virginia, we are taking the time to ensure we evaluate the opportunity thoroughly before posting any lines.”