When most people think of Delaware, one of four (and only four) things comes to mind: native son Joe Biden, Delaware General Corporation Law, that one scene from Wayne’s World, or that Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution. No other answers will be accepted - sorry, Blue Hens fans.
(Imagine being able to be magically whisked away…to Delaware.)
One answer that would not come to mind in a sane person is “sports and gaming mecca.” Despite the state’s best tourism efforts (their website rather gamely offers “everything from NCAA college football to minor league baseball“), Delaware has not been known as a sports fan’s paradise. That, however, may change if the state goes ahead with plans to allow single-game and parlay betting on NFL games. Delaware, here we come!
Like many, if not all, US states, Delaware is feeling the pinch of the recession in its budget. While most states take these sorts of opportunities to tax that which we hold most dearly (booze and smokes), Delaware has taken a novel approach…dare we say, the correct approach? At least, that’s according to the colorful news daily USA TODAY:
The state of Delaware intends to allow single-event betting on NFL games beginning with the start of the upcoming season Sept. 10, but court challenges from sports leagues could delay the plan.
When approved by the state legislature and signed into law in May, the sports lottery’s exact form was left to be determined. State lottery director Wayne Lemons told USA TODAY on Monday it will allow bettors to wager on the outcome of one game or a parlay of several games.
“We will have both types of bets,” Lemons said.
The NFL, of all parties, is leading the opposition to this plan. The league has filed briefs with the state Supreme Court to block gambling on their games - an odd move for a league that rakes in millions, if not billions, in revenue from interested gamblers every year. The fact that Delaware even has the opportunity to offer sports betting is an aberration, as only three states outside of Nevada are even allowed to consider the idea. This is due to 1992’s Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PAPSA), a law that effectively outlawed sports betting anywhere outside of Nevada and the three other states that had at one time offered it: Delaware, Oregon, and Montana.
But we don’t particularly care about the politics here. We care about gambling on football, and if Delaware’s gonna let us do it, then, by gum, we’re going to Delaware come football season! Now…where is it, anyway?