The people of Columbia enjoy a tradition of sports betting. They have held a number of sporting events from games between amateur leagues and professional teams to soccer games between international sides and high school football between college and high school players. In addition, major tournaments such as the Columbia Southern Athletic Conference and St. Louis Rams minor league baseball have also been held. In this article, I would like to tell you about my experience betting on sports at the Columbia Sportsatorium.
When I got involved in sports betting in 2021, my interest was primarily to learn more about the sportsbook I had just started using. At the time I didn’t know much about any other sportsbooks in the area. I knew that the one I had just used was run by a former politician who had been an unsuccessful candidate for office several times. I assumed that since he had been a state politician many times that the sportsbook was reliable. I did not realize that the business he ran had grossed over one million dollars in profit in the previous year.
My next concern was how they would manage to fund their operation in the upcoming year, with the very little amount of capital that they have. This was the main reason that I had been reading about and learning about the sports betting odds that they will be on the upcoming November 7th election ballot. My understanding of the sportsbooks financial situation had evolved, from having only basic knowledge to having more depth.
Immediately following the July 4th weekend in which my interest in the sports betting industry took a turn for the worse, there were rumors that incumbent Governor John Kitzhabub was considering changing his party affiliation. These reports came out shortly before he was scheduled to be sworn into his new term as governor of the state of Maine. The Democrats had a very narrow advantage over the Republicans for the governorship, but after losing fourteen seats in the state legislature, the Democrats looked at changing their registration to the Independence Party. Although this would have removed a majority of the seats in the legislature, a newly introduced piece of legislation would prevent the Independence Party from taking over the governorship during the next go around.
With this news, my attention turned to the upcoming 2021 ballot referendum in Maine. The last two general elections had produced very lopsided results and many citizens of Portland facing an unprecedented governorship. Once again, there will be a special election to fill the seat left open by the resignation of Governor Kitzhabub. The top two finishers in the special election will then face off against each other for the governorship of the state of Maine.
There was hope that this new legislation would help increase voter turnout and decrease the number of legislative seats held by the Independence Party. Unfortunately, that legislation was shelved before it had a chance to benefit voters. For whatever reason, legislators decided to push through the legislation despite the fact that it was clear that the Maine constitution is worded to prevent any further attempts at legislative attempts to impose limits on sports betting. Apparently, Maine is too lax when it comes to regulation of its citizens’ right to enjoy gambling. If this is true, why would legislators want to increase voter turnout in order to reduce the number of legislative seats? I suppose because they think they can get more seats and keep control of the upcoming election.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that legalized sports betting in Maine is dead in the water. At the end of the session, the Maine House and Senate will have to take another look at the sports betting bill. If passed, it is likely that the upcoming 2021 ballot referendum will include a proposal to legalize gambling. Should the House and Senate approve this measure, voters will have the opportunity to vote on whether to legalize gambling in Maine. Should the legislature vote to legalize gambling, it is likely that the constitutional amendment to legalize gambling will pass and be law in Maine.
The question remains, “Would the constitutional amendment to legalize sports betting require an initiative petition to be introduced by an independent candidate for governor in 2021 if it were to become law?” If it were, then you could expect Governor LePage to reintroduce the proposal and use it as the campaign slogan. He may also sign off on the amendment as part of the legislature’s final bill. Regardless, it is likely that the initiative process will be initiated prior to the end of the current session. If it is successful, the amendment would become law in 2021.