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Five States Have Gambling Initiatives On The Ballot This November

Voters In Maryland, South Dakota, Louisiana, Nebraska, And Colorado Can Alter The Legal Landscape Of Local Gambling Markets


Nebraska, South Dakota, Louisiana, Maryland and Colorado are at the forefront of what’s at stake in the gambling world this November as the five states all have gambling-related initiatives on the ballot.

South Dakota, Louisiana, and Maryland are all voting on whether to legalize sports betting, while Colorado is voting on whether to increase the maximum bet rules in place.

Nebraska, on the other hand, is deciding whether to bring casinos to its state at all. The Cornhusker state has three initiatives all relating to the issue and if all three pass, it will no longer be one of the few states in the union without casino gambling.

South Dakota’s sports betting bill is simply whether to change the state constitution to allow in-person sports betting at Deadwood’s casinos. Deadwood currently offers blackjack, craps, keno, poker, roulette and slot machines, but a majority “yes” vote would expand its offerings to include sports betting.

Louisiana’s and Maryland’s legislation is a bit more vague since the COVID-19 pandemic shortened the legislative session in the two states put the issue on the ballot without any regulatory framework in place. If the initiatives pass, then lawmakers will spend the 2021 working on rules for the newly formed market.

Louisiana’s initiative is slightly different from Maryland because the issue will be legalized parish by parish and not by the entire state. It is very possible that Louisiana will end up as a state with some areas where sports betting is legal and some where it is forbidden.

If all three states legalize sports gambling, exactly half of the country will have legalized the activity with 25 states passing legislation since the Supreme Court overturned PASPA in May 2018.

Colorado already legalized sports betting last year, rolled out its market this past spring and already offers a wide array of games at its casinos. But the state has a law that won’t allow gamblers to place a bet bigger than $100, regardless of the game they are playing. This year, Coloradans have the ability to lift that restriction and allow larger bets at its 33 casinos.