Former Texas Governor Rick Perry has thrown his support behind the Sports Betting Alliance (SBA) in an effort to legalize sports betting in Texas. Perry, in a video release, estimated that illegal sports betting in the state amounts to a whopping $8.7 billion. He warned that using illegal operators poses a threat to users’ personal information and added that there is no guarantee of receiving payouts. Perry believes that legalizing sports betting would create a consumer-protected online market, putting an end to the illicit offshore market.
Perry also noted the backing of professional sports franchises in Texas for the legalization of sports wagering. He emphasized that the state’s 11 major professional sports franchises are in support of this move. Additionally, he pointed out that Texas is lagging behind as more than 35 states have already legalized sports betting. Perry mentioned that neighboring states are benefitting from money that could otherwise stay in Texas. Legalizing betting, he argued, could generate up to $556 million in annual revenue for the state.
The former Governor stressed the importance of implementing a robust set of rules to safeguard the integrity of sports competitions. He believes that legal options for Texans to wager on sports, combined with strict regulations, would help maintain the integrity of sports while also providing legal avenues for betting.
Texas is currently surrounded by states that already offer legal sports betting, such as Louisiana, Arkansas, and New Mexico. Efforts toward legalization continue in neighboring Oklahoma. Perry’s support for the Sports Betting Alliance is seen as a significant step in the fight for the legalization of sports betting in Texas.