North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper Reiterates Support for Online Sports Gambling Legalization

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper Reiterates Support for Online Sports Gambling Legalization article feature image

Via Grant Halverson/Getty Images. Pictured: Armando Bacot #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels and Mark Williams #15 of the Duke Blue Devils tip off

The governor of North Carolina has reiterated his support for legalizing online sports betting in an interview released on Tuesday.

Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat in his second term, told a podcast host from the The News & Observer that "it's time for us to step up and do it."

“It’s here whether we like it or not,” Cooper said. "The issue is will North Carolina try to be on the cutting edge for the technology jobs and other employment that it will create and plus be able to get state taxpayers their cut, or are we just going to let it happen all around us? I think it’s time for us to step up and do it.”

A bill that would legalize sports gambling in the state has already passed the State Senate in August of last year. If it passes the House, the bill becomes law as long as Gov. Cooper signs off on it.

In November, the bill passed a House committee. The full House could vote on the potential legislation during this current legislative session.

Gov. Cooper had expressed his support for online sports betting legalization in previous interviews. In 2019, Cooper signed legislation that allowed sports betting on tribal lands. The bill had passed the state House and Senate with landslide victories.

Supporters of this new House bill are confident that they have the votes necessary to pass it, the newspaper reported.

Roughly 20 states have legalized online sports gambling in some form since a 2018 U.S. Supreme Court case that declared the federal ban on sports gambling as unconstitutional. One of them includes New York, which launched in early January to the tune of roughly $58 million in tax revenue in less than a month, which will be repurposed to buoy education departments and social services.

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