California Tribe seeking to reignite sports betting debate in 2024

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A Native American tribe is seeking to table an online sports betting initiative in the 2024 election cycle, according to reports. 

PlayUSA has reported that the Pala Band of Mission Indians will petition for an online sports betting provision when the election comes around again in 13 months’ time. 

The chair of the tribe used the week of G2E to talk to reporters about the prospects of an online sports betting initiative, which still hasn’t been filed. 

But despite the tribe opposing Prop 27 vehemently in 2022, it appears to have found the willpower to move once more to support sports betting in 2024. 

Mark Macarro, the chair of the Pala Tribe, told PlayUSA: “Maybe this is just a case of one tribe wanting it so much when no one else really seems to want it. Certainly, voters didn’t want it last election. But I’m looking forward to seeing the language. Maybe they came up with something brilliant that no one else thought up.”

The 2022 election on sports betting during the midterms ended up in a disaster for all parties after both Prop 26 – the tribal sports betting movement – and Prop 27 – the commercial sports betting proposition – resoundingly failed at the polls. 

Both bills failed to get 20% support at the polls despite over $600m being spent by both sides of the debate in campaigning. 

Following the 2022 debacle, there seemed to be little desire to spend millions of dollars and campaign heavily for sports betting again in 2024, but the Pala Band of Mission Indians appears to have pulled the trigger on the starting gun. 

There is very little detail of what any potential initiative would look like and it is worth reiterating that no initiative has been filed. Plus, some of the other major Native American tribes that were involved in the process in 2022 are yet to declare interest in the process.