Legalized Texas Betting Feels Like A Toss-Up

Everyone has an opinion on whether or not Texas will legalize sports betting — and we mean everyone. We pulled different opinions from sports leaders, both in Texas and on a national scale, and the consensus was overwhelming: no one knows. Some say it’s happening, some say it’s not, and taken together, it feels like a 50-50 chance.

Let’s recap those diverging opinions to gauge what are the chances of Texas betting apps ever being legal in the state.

“50-50 At Best”

The first opinion comes from Dallas Stars president Brad Alberts. He’s in the same spot as us with this whole situation with a “50-50 chance at best”, he said. In the same interview, Alberts mentioned the following:

“I think it’s in the same spot it was. The same challenges exist, which is a resistant Senate, led by the Lieutenant Governor. And I don’t think that that has changed. Obviously, those same personalities are still in office,” Alberts told LSR. “I think the momentum of last session, getting it through the House is positive. But you still have to get it through the Senate.”

Let’s dig into this statement a little. There has been some progress in Texas’ push to join the legalized betting industry in the United States. This last legislative session, not one, but two different Texas sports betting bills moved out of the House committee. This is important because it’s the first time it’s ever happened. Past bills couldn’t even make it out of the House.

However, both of these recent bills died in the Senate. With that, Texas can’t even begin talks about legalizing until 2025 when the new session begins.

Alberts also mentioned Lieutenant Governor, who is Dan Patrick. He is essentially second in command after the state governor and he’s made his opinions on sports betting clear: he doesn’t want it. Patrick’s job overseas the Senate and with that staunch stance, you can see why Albert is on the fence about legalization.

Patrick made a few posts on X in May that reiterated his position. He said, “Texas is a red state. Yet the House vote on sports betting was carried by a Dem majority. The Texas Senate doesn’t pass bills without GOP in the minority. The GOP majority guides our path.”

Folks, Texas is as red and GOP-led as can be. The recent surge in people moving there has only made it more red. We really doubt Patrick is going to budge and upset those voters. But here’s the thing: the Senate is also made up of 12, mostly GOP politicians. They are in the same boat as Patrick.

How A Trump Win Can Change Texas Fortunes

We’ll be honest, so long as Patrick remains in office, we don’t see Texas changing its tune on sports betting. However, a path for Patrick to leave is a very real possibility.

Patrick’s position is secure until 2026, unless he decides to leave it. Patrick is 74 years old so he could always retire. However, with how long politicians are overstaying their welcome — especially in the White House — we doubt Patrick will walk away from this type of power.

A more realistic path out for Patrick is if he steps into even bigger power. A Donald Trump win in the 2024 Presidential election, which polls indicate is highly likely, is that meal ticket for Patrick. See, Trump could elevate Patrick into his cabinet. If that happens, Patrick would have to leave his position in Texas. No way Patrick would turn down an offer that juicy. No way.

Betting Company Execs Remain Hopeful For Texas

You know who’s more optimistic about Texas betting chances? Executives at leading sportsbooks like DraftKings and MGM.

First of all, there’s DraftKings CEO Jason Robinson. On an investor call in May, he was asked point-blank about the state. Robins replied, “I think Texas has a real shot. (A sports betting bill) got through one chamber last year. The Texas legislature doesn’t meet in 2024 so we’re really gearing up for 2025.”

Then there’s BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt. In a conference in March, he mentioned “California is not in our near-term model, Texas is.”

Admittedly, we put less stock in these two opinions. As leading figures of these companies, it’s in their best interest to be optimistic and rally shareholders. They’re selling the possibility and we don’t fault them for that.

Personally, we’re eyeing the Trump presidency. We really think that’s the best chance at getting something changed in Texas. It all comes down to Patrick leaving the Senate because we’re pessimistic about him changing his opinion on the matter.

If you’re in Texas and reading this, you can always hit up a trusted offshore sportsbook to do your online wagering. These work in the Lone Star State just fine. For the foreseeable future, going offshore is the only legit way for Texas bettors to gamble on sports and casinos online. If you’re looking for a trustworthy spot, we suggest one of the following betting sites:

Badge ranking partner

1

★★★★★

Bonus

50% up to $1,000

Bet Now
Badge ranking partner

2

★★★★★

Bonus

125% Sports Bonus - up to $2,500

Bet Now
Badge ranking partner

3

★★★★☆

Bonus

50% up to $1,000

Bet Now
Eric Uribe

Eric was born and raised in Nevada — the center of gambling in the United States. Throw in his natural interest in sports, and Eric was destined to be a sports bettor. This came to a head once Eric turned 21. Already a working sports journalist while in college, Eric began betting at his local sportsbook. Despite massive losses (at first), Eric continued to chip away at wagering. Eventually, he got half-decent at it. Now Eric is a trusted betting analyst. Not only is he skilled at making picks, but also breaking down the state of the industry — legalization, revenue, and innovation. You can read Eric's writings exclusively on OSB.