Sen. Blumenthal calls on Caesars to cancel college sports betting deals

Richard Blumenthal Tom Reeg letter
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Concerns about online sports betting in the US is not just manifesting itself as new bills at the state level. Federal lawmakers are also voicing concerns, as indicated by a letter penned by Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal.

The Democrat sent his open letter to Caesars Entertainment CEO Tom Reeg shortly after the New York Times published a series of sports-betting-related articles, including one questioning the presence of Caesars Sportsbooks on college campuses titled “How College and Sports-Betting Companies ‘Caesarized’ Campus Life“.

In the letter, Blumenthal admonished Reeg and, in turn, Caesars Entertainment for the company’s business decisions and called them to terminate partnerships with college athletic departments like those at LSU and Michigan State.

“Young people should not be targeted by sports wagering advertisements and Caesars’ deliberate marketing towards college-aged students cannot continue,” Blumenthal wrote.

“I call on you to end this disgraceful practice in order to protect students and prevent the irreparable harm that will be caused by Caesars’ marketing practices and college partnerships,” he added. He gave Reeg a deadline of Dec. 9 to respond. At time of writing, Caesars has released no such indication it plans to terminate these existing partnerships.

Blumenthal also cited the American Gaming Association (AGA) marketing code of conduct, which expressly prohibits marketing on college campuses or in college publications.

While Blumenthal set the deadline, he did not state what he intended to do if Reeg or Caesars did not respond. His home state of Connecticut does not feature any Caesars properties and only has two tribally owned casinos, Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun. Blumenthal does serve on the Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation, but his assignments could change with the start of the 118th session of Congress on Jan. 3.