South Carolina’s Governor Isn’t Helping the State’s Sports Betting Efforts

As we inch closer to 40 states in the USA getting sports betting legalized, nothing is changing for South Carolina’s sports betting efforts. This has been disappointing to see, especially with the latest news out of North Carolina. In case you missed it, it was recently announced that NC will launch legal wagers in January of 2024. For people in South Carolina, this is frustrating news, especially with the fact that South Carolina’s governor isn’t helping the state’s sports betting efforts.

Governor Henry McMaster is currently in office and he hasn’t hidden from the fact that he isn’t a fan of sports betting. He has publicly said that it goes against South Carolina’s values, which a lot of people don’t agree with. At the end of the day, betting is being legalized across the country and South Carolina is missing out on countless revenue opportunities by not getting things done themselves. People want to see the laws changed as soon as possible.

“That’s gambling,” McMaster said during the Governor debates when discussing sports betting and marijuana for South Carolina. A lot of people (are) opposed to it and recreational marijuana; those are not the answers to the problems in South Carolina. Far from it. And I would just I would echo Congressman Clyburn when he said, and I quote, ‘You need to grow up, Joe (Cunningham).'”

With McMaster being so against legal sports betting, it feels like nothing will change until he’s out of office. However, people don’t want to have to wait for someone to replace him as governor for sports betting to be made legal. South Carolina clearly isn’t in a huge rush to get things turned around, which sucks to see. McMaster is a big reason for that and a lot of sports fans in the area remain furious with him.

People in South Carolina will be traveling to North Carolina for their betting needs

One thing to remember here is that people in South Carolina will be traveling to North Carolina for their betting needs. Once January rolls around, things will indeed be legal in NC and their citizens can’t wait. However, it’s not just in-person betting that will be allowed, but also mobile wagers as well. With this, countless people from SC will simply drive across state lines to get their wagers in. It feels like it will be a simple process for them.

However, this still involves them having to travel across those state lines. Imagine a world where people would be able to check the NFL betting odds for their favorite team and simply place wagers from the comfort of their own homes. That’s what they’re hoping for, but again, no one knows when that day will arrive. People making their way to South Carolina is also going to have an impact on local businesses.

With sports betting becoming legal in the winter, this means that people will certainly start planning vacations to the nearby state and spending money not only on hotels, but restaurants and bars as well. This is money that could be spent in South Carolina instead, but this is going to be one of the many negative impacts of no legal betting allowed for the state’s citizens.

In January, people in South Carolina will certainly have their focus on the NFL and NCAAF betting odds. People love the South Carolina Gamecocks, and they’d also love to be able to bet on them. If they want to be able to do that down the road, they will need to travel to outside states. Come January, North Carolina will be on the list for them as well, but McMaster needs to wake up and realize that this is a hassle for people in the state.

Could South Carolina sports betting arrive in 2024?

A big question people have on their minds is could South Carolina sports betting arrive in 2024? While we know for sure that things won’t be coming later this year, there’s still plenty of hope that 2024 will be when things get finalized. This will come down to McMaster. While he has said he’s against things, you never know if he’ll change his mind with the right sports betting bill.

It would need to be one that makes him and lawmakers happy. Don’t forget about sports betting officials too. The longer South Carolina waits, the more it’s going to anger sports fans in the state. SC has made many attempts in the past to try and get things across the line, but bills have failed on more than one occasion. However, there’s optimism in things getting right soon.

It’s not going to be easy and a lot of work is going to be needed, but ’24 could be a year to remember for South Carolina. If sports betting is somehow legalized, it will be historic for the southern state. We’re going to have to wait and see how things play out here, but plenty of proponents will be ready to back sports betting in the future.

Peter Lewis

Peter Lewis Jr. comes from Mississippi where he and his family spend their days discussing college football, baseball and basketball. He's written sports journalism for years after studying journalism at a local university. Over time, Peter has cultivated extensive knowledge covering sports betting legislation across the country. He closely tracks the latest regulatory developments and provides key insights into their impacts. Peter also offers sharp MLB betting analysis, leveraging stats and trends to identify value on matchups.