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The Two Sports Betting Propositions Get Voted Down as Neither Gets Close to Majority Support in California During the Midterm Election

With the California election results, both the gaming tribes and the mobile sportsbooks will have time to focus on new marketing tactics for 2024. Both Proposition 26 and 27 didn’t get enough voters to gain a significant edge.

Sports Betting is Still Illegal in California

Both sides have battled for months on which measure would monopolize the market. Many candidates across the United States tried to use sports betting as a way to gain even the slightest edge during Election Day.

Both sides spent record amounts of money pursuing undecided voters in the Golden State. Most bookmakers supporting Prop 27 waived the wait flag before D-Day since several polls indicated their support was dwindling. The coalition of gaming tribes saw this as an opportunity, as both political affiliations immensely supported keeping the money in the state.

DraftKings and FanDuel were the only sportsbook operators that stuck around until the last minute. Their efforts were deemed as futile as Gov. Gavin Newsom backed Prop 26, which appeared on the ballot.

How Did Both Sides Do in the State?

During any election, many issues will appear on any ballot. Unfortunately, for the majority, sports wagering in California wasn’t a top priority.

With approximately a third of the precincts reporting their results, only 16 percent of the vote went towards mobile sports betting, while less than 30 percent went towards tribal sports betting, which would take place at their casinos and four race tracks throughout the state.

The voters could say “Yes” to one or both, and vice versa. There was certainly an uphill battle for both sides, but it’s safe to say many voters were turned off by the constant ads and campaigns.

Still, the tribes, led by San Manuel and Pechanga, view this as a significant victory because the sportsbooks based outside of the state will not gain a cent of revenue for at least two more years.

This could be a minor victory for the cardrooms as the tribes fell short by a large margin. This means these cardrooms will avoid potentially being sued and shutting down in the Golden State.

However, this doesn’t mean the bookmakers can take their foot off the gas pedal. Prop 26 still led by nearly 14 percent, with a third of presidents reporting. In hindsight, tribal retail sports betting has a solid edge over online sportsbooks.

Residents Will Have to Wait

Even though it’s highly frowned upon by the industry, potential bettors could still use offshore sportsbooks to place wagers. Others could cross state lines as states like Arizona, Nevada, and Oregon offer sports betting.

In terms of population, California has the largest share. In addition, it is nearly double when compared to New York. New York will remain the sports betting capital of the nation for the time being.

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