Rick Perry Thinks Texas Sports Betting Will Pass ‘Overwhelmingly’

Written By Aleeyah Jadavji on March 20, 2023
Perry Says Texas Sports Betting Bill Will Pass

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry believes online sports betting legislation that would amend the state constitution will pass “overwhelmingly” when put to a vote.

Perry recently spoke on the World Series of Politics podcast about his confidence in the legislation put forth in the House by Rep. Jeff Leach and in the Senate by Sen. Lois Kolkhorst.

The fate of online sports betting in Texas rests in the State Affairs Committees of both the House and Senate. The House State Affairs Committee plans to address Leach’s bill Wednesday. The Senate committee has not announced a hearing date for Kolkhorst’s bill.

Senate Bill 715 is the best path to Texas sports betting success

Perry believes Senate Bill 715 is the best path to legalizing online sports betting that Texas has seen.

As discussed by PlayTexas, Kolkhorst’s proposed sports betting bill is backed by the Texas Sports Betting Alliance, which comprises professional sports franchises, leagues, racetracks and gambling organizations.

Several wealthy businessmen and Texas sports team owners also back the sports betting bill, including:

  • Tilman Fertitta
  • Jerry Jones
  • Cal McNair

Kolkhorst proposes a 10% tax rate to support public education initiatives in the state and promises “to bring security and safety into the world of mobile sports betting.”

Keeping offshore gambling sites from pocketing all of Texas’s online sports betting revenue would benefit the state. It would also protect bettors who can fall prey to bad betting lines and poor account security services.

Perry believes there is overwhelming support

For any amendments to the Texas constitution, two-thirds of lawmakers must agree before the legislature can pass a bill on to a public referendum. Perry is confident this will happen, sending online sports betting to the November 2023 ballot.

Since Perry entered the political scene in 1984, the push for this change in legislation has been one of the biggest he has come across.

“There’s never been this coming together, to work on one issue,” Perry said.

To continue his show of support, Perry joined the SBA last year and added his name to the growing list of Texas elites. Given the amount of support for sports teams in general in Texas, it seems intuitive to Perry that sports betting will easily make its way to the state sooner rather than later.

“I feel comfortable that once it becomes a constitutional amendment and the people of the state have a chance to look at it, it will pass,” Perry said. “And I think it will pass rather overwhelmingly.”

Projected Texas sports betting revenue could top $2 Billion

If approved, sports betting in Texas could rival New York for the largest market in the country.

PlayTexas initially predicted that gaming revenue for sports betting could amount to $2 billion once regulated. Given the 10% tax rate and allowances for promo deductions, this means Texas could potentially earn over $100 million in tax revenue.

Generating this much tax revenue from sports betting could increase state funding for education and property tax relief for all Texans.

While the proposal faces pushback from the casinos on the ground, it seems that more people are supporting the bill than not.

Photo by Andrew Harnik, File / AP Photo / illustrated by PlayTexas
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Aleeyah Jadavji

Aleeyah hails from Toronto, Ontario in Canada and has been working predominantly in the poker industry since 2015. From writing articles, to interviewing big winners and live reporting on poker's biggest stages, she's seen it all. She currently covers legal gaming's legislative pathway for PlayTexas. Aleeyah loves to cook and create content to showcase her passion for food and travel. She also loves sriracha, and doesn't trust anyone that believes it's not a top-tier condiment.

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