Minnesota Legislature

  • Minnesota sports betting is currently seeing major support from local legislators.
  • Many believe the market for wagering on sporting events in the state to makes its launch is only a matter of when not if.
  • The Minnesota Indian Gaming Association (MIGA) opposes a regulated sports betting industry.

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Sports betting in Minnesota could become a reality in the near future as local supporters have shown optimism for the market.

In order to expand the gambling industry to include regulated sports betting, lawmakers need to negotiate with the Minnesota Indian Gaming Association (MIGA). The MIGA have publicly opposed sports betting for the state.

Despite this, lawmakers believe it’s a matter of when, not if, Minnesota will see a regulated sports gaming industry. Their optimism bodes well for local players.

Sports Betting In Minnesota

Those in favor of launching a Minnesota sports betting market want to see online betting go live statewide. This is where the pushback from the MIGA comes into play.

The current compact does not permit Minnesota gambling off of tribal grounds and the MIGA does not currently appear to be budging on this matter nor considering it.

“The Minnesota Indian Gaming Association continues to oppose the expansion of off-reservation gambling, including the legalization of sports betting,” read an official statement from the MIGA when asked about sports betting.

Minnesota is surrounded by three active sports betting markets in Iowa, South Dakota, and Wisconsin and local sports bettors travel across state lines to bet on sporting events constantly.

Iowa, in particular, sees more than $100 million wagered on sports on a monthly basis, with mobile betting responsible for more than 90% of those total wagers.

As more states launch sports betting and rake in the fiscal benefits, Minnesota lawmakers could be tempted to negotiate with the MIGA and convince them that sports gaming can be beneficial for all.

How Soon Until Sports Betting Launches For The State?

Putting a timeline on when sports betting would go live in Minnesota is difficult. There are currently no sports gaming measures within the Minnesota Legislature.

Before a bill can be drawn up, lawmakers need to deliberate with the MIGA in order to get the tribes on their side to form a new compact, renegotiating the current one.

What lawmakers fear is the money they are losing each year with locals betting on sports in other ways, through neighboring states.

“In Minnesota, your father’s bookie was the kind of person who showed up at your first communion,” said, Pat Garofalo, a Minnesota State Representative. “The big change is taking it from the underground to a regulated economy. As the government is stuck in the mud, people … do what they want regardless of what the government tells them.”

Sports betting is still a ways away from becoming a reality. However, 2022 could see the market progress towards an eventual launch in Minnesota.

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