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Two sports betting initiatives on California’s state ballot failed to garner enough support for either proposal to be approved. In fact, it wasn’t even close, considering neither Proposition 26 or 27 achieved even 20% support among voters. That is a shocking rebuke, given $600 million was spent on ads and other promotional content by various groups in support of these proposals. Additionally, all five states that have previously put sports betting legalization on the ballot voted to approve.

Though California would likely become the fastest growing market for sports betting if the state were to legalize, it is unlikely that a serious effort to achieve deregulation resumes until 2024. For now, New York will remain the top dog for sports betting growth and monthly revenues.

Related ETF: Roundhill Sports Betting & iGaming ETF (BETZ)

Yesterday, MRP highlighted the partial success of midterm election ballot measures focused on legalizing the sale of cannabis for recreational use in several states. Online sports betting also found its way onto the ballot in California, which carries the potential to become the largest sports betting markets in the nation once it is allowed throughout the state.

Unfortunately, it will be some time before that potential is realized, as two separate initiatives failed to meet the threshold for approval. That represents a huge letdown for publicly traded bookmakers, whose shares have been stuck in a perpetual downtrend for more than a year now and could have used a big legislative win to get their footing back.

California’s gambling industry currently exists exclusively in casinos on Native American reservation lands. The tribespeople in charge of those operations lobbied to keep sports betting revenue within the state and on their terms via Proposition 26. That measure would have approved the legalization of sports betting, but preserve all sports betting activities to American Indian gaming casinos and licensed racetracks (the proposition was also known as the California Legalize Sports Betting on American Indian Lands Initiative). Prop 26 was rejected by…

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