Caesars Entertainment has stated that it is “neutral” on the legalization direction it would like to see the state of California undertake regarding sports betting.
Two sports betting initiatives – Proposition 26 and Proposition 27 – are being discussed in the Golden State and its population will vote on the matter at the ballot box in November later this year.
Proposition 26 – The California Sports Wagering Regulation and Unlawful Gaming Enforcement Act – is backed by a group of the state’s tribes and would only allow retail sports betting at tribal gaming properties as well as four horse racing tracks in the state, with no online sports wagering.
Meanwhile, Proposition 27 – The California Solutions to Homeless and Mental Health Act – would legalize online sports betting in the Golden State and is already backed by several operators such as FanDuel, BetMGM, and DraftKings.
Last week, Major League Baseball (MLB) became the first professional sports league to show its support for Proposition 27.
However, Caesars has stated it will not be planting its flag for any initiative in California.
Caesars California sports betting position
During the operator’s recent earnings call reflecting on their second quarter results, CEO Tom Reeg was asked if the company is backing any of the initiatives in the California sports betting discussion.
Reeg commented: “In terms of California, we’re not part of either initiative. We want to see sports betting in every jurisdiction that we can find.
“We’d love to see icasino in every jurisdiction we can find. We have a decade-long relationship with a number of tribes across the country where we’ve been managing their assets through multiple contract renewals, which was a unique position when we bought Caesars. I’ve never seen that before.
“And we don’t want to be in opposition to tribal interest when we’re their partners. So we’ve remained neutral in California throughout. You should expect that to be the case in any state where tribes are at odds with the commercial interest.”
Reeg was also asked during the earnings call if there were any US states where Caesars would potentially take a hard pass if there was a higher buy-in or a higher tax rate.
He replied: “I struggle to think of a jurisdiction we would not go to in the US if it opens. I guess, if you think of a very small state that puts up an enormous tax rate, that’s a small possibility, but we want to be everywhere.”