A U.S. Supreme Court decision last month paved the way for states across the country to legalize sports betting, but Marylanders still seem unsure about bringing that kind of wagering to the state’s casinos, according to a new poll released by Gonzales Research and Media Services.
Forty-one percent of respondents said they were in favor of bringing sportsbooks to Maryland, while 38 percent opposed it. Breaking down those numbers a bit further, only 16 percent supporting sports gambling said they “strongly favor” such a move. The opposition is much stauncher: 28 percent of the detractors said they “strongly opposed” legalization.
Twenty-one percent remain unsure.
Maryland’s neighbors to the east, Delaware, became the first state to legalize sports gambling following the Supreme Court’s ruling. New Jersey, which brought the case to the highest court in the land after sports leagues pushed back against a 2011 ballot measure that legalized sports betting in the state, followed suit.
During the most recent legislative session, Maryland legislators considered a bill to put the issue to voters during the upcoming general collection in anticipation of the Supreme Court’s decision. But it didn’t pass the General Assembly.
Following the court’s ruling, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. told the Baltimore Business Journal he would be “amenable” to a special session to put the issue on the ballot in November.
The poll, conducted June 4-10, surveyed 800 registered voters who are likely to participate in the upcoming November general election.