Texas Sports Betting Hopes Took a Hit Thanks to Governor Voting Results

• Greg Abbott beats out Beto O’Rourke in Texas Governor race
• November 8th, 2022
• Texas

For everyone who is eyeing legal Texas sports betting to arrive within the next couple of years, some rough news may have potentially come in this week. With Beto O’Rourke hoping to win the race to become the state’s next governor, things didn’t go as planned, with Greg Abbott winning the vote. With this, there’s no question that the Texas sports betting hopes took a hit thanks to governor voting results.

O’Rourke was all in for Texas sports betting, as he openly said in public that he wanted to see it arrive in the state in the near future. This led to many people voicing their support for the politician, as they felt like he had the right plan of attack to try and bring the betting to the Lone Star State. However, with Abbott winning and returning as governor, O’Rourke’s efforts have been for nothing.

What worries people is that while Abbott has said in the past that he’s open to legal sports betting potentially landing in Texas, he hasn’t been so enthusiastic about things in the past. Just recently, Abbott said, through his secretary, that he’d be open to the discussion of sports betting in Texas. That sings a completely different tune to what O’Rourke had been saying to potential voters in recent months.

Abbott isn’t passionate about this and the general feeling is that he’s been against sports betting for a while now. The pro teams in Texas seem to be all for it, with Jerry Jones, Mark Cuban and other sports teams owners voicing their desire for betting to come to Texas. All eyes will be on Abbott to see if he actually wants to try and help bring change or not, but things would have had a better chance if O’Rourke was governor, no question about that.

Texas and its citizens are missing out on an insane amount of money

With all of the uncertainty on things, Texas and its citizens are missing out on an insane amount of money. You can talk about the revenue for the state all you want, but the fact that people have to travel to outside states to make their wagers is also costing local businesses as well. Having said that, people from Texas are still finding ways to cash in big time with head-turning wagers.

Take a look at Jim McInvale, the man known as ‘Mattress Mack’ for example. He had been checking the MLB betting lines for a while now, particularly with his eyes on the Houston Astros. He was all over the World Series betting odds early, looking to make a monster splash on his favorite team. Well, Mack sure did that, as he set a record by winning more than $75 million on the World Series alone.

Talk about a huge win for him. However, all of his bets on the Astros to win the Fall Classic had to come outside of Texas state lines. Mack has been known to travel for his bets, and he even traveled to Philadelphia to watch the Astros take on the Phillies. He was incredibly invested in the series and understandably so. Imagine all of the other people in Texas who would be able to share his passion and excitement for a team like the Astros if there was legal betting?

This is something that O’Rourke wanted to make happen. Had he ended up becoming the new governor, things might have been able to get accomplished down the road. However, the uncertainty with Abbott once again in charge has people worried. Abbott needs to be more open than just a debate on sports betting coming to Texas. This is something that is long overdue and change must be on the way. Who knows if that will happen, though.

California missing out on sports betting will impact Texas too

One thing to keep in mind too is that California missing out on sports betting will impact Texas too. Heck, this is also going to have a negative impact for Florida as well. All three states are in limbo when it comes to sports betting, but California took a major step back when neither of the propositions on the November ballot passed. Instead, both failed miserably and it has folks in the state furious.

This doesn’t provide a lot of hope for people in Florida and Texas. These are the three biggest states in the USA, yet they haven’t been able to get things across the line for legal wagers. How in the world is this even possible? Despite that, California appeared to have things cooking, but then the ballot measures failed. Florida even had legal wagers for a little while, but then things were shut down by a U.S. District Judge.

Now Texas is hoping to get in the driver’s seat soon, but Abbott running the show could further delay things. Just when you think some good news might be on the wait for Texas, Florida or California sports betting, there’s a hiccup recorded. You’ve really got to feel bad for people who just want to make their sports bets in these states, but can’t.

Peter Lewis

Peter Lewis Jr. comes from Mississippi where he and his family spend their days discussing college football and basketball. He's written sports journalism for years after studying journalism at a local university.