On the last day of the year for the Michigan State Legislature, something great happened. The Michigan State Senate voted 35-3 to pass a bill that includes the legalization of sports betting and fantasy sports. The Governor of the Wolverine State, Gretchen Whitmer, will likely sign the bill into law before the end of the year.
The legislation calls for full mobile wagering. Michigan will become the 20th state to pass sports betting legislation.
This mushrooming of sports betting has occurred in the past year and a half since the Supreme Court struck down PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 or the Bradley Act) with their May 2018 decision in Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association. Up until this point, the Bradley Act had effectively outlawed sports betting nationwide, excluding a few states. The sports lotteries conducted in Oregon, Delaware, and Montana were exempt, as well as the licensed sports pools in Nevada. Michigan is just the latest state to begin taking advantage of PASPA being overturned, following nineteen other states before it, including its southern neighbor, Indiana.
The goal is to have the state’s operators ready to accept bets by early February for the Super Bowl. This would make it operational before Illinois, who have dragged their heels with the process.