New Florida Sports Betting Brief Cites ‘Legal Fiction’ In Online Tribal Gaming

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Florida sports betting

Interest group No Casinos on Monday filed an amicus brief with the state Supreme Court in support of West Flagler Associates in the ongoing Florida sports betting case. 

West Flagler is arguing in the state Supreme Court that the Seminole Compact, via an agreement with Gov. Ron DeSantis, violates the Florida Constitution. West Flagler’s argument is that expanded gambling must be approved through a referendum supported by 60% of voters. 

The state will next respond to the brief as part of the ongoing Florida sports betting case. 

No Casinos opposed to Florida betting

Monday marked the deadline for No Casinos to file its brief. 

No Casinos is a non-profit organization that refers to itself as “Florida’s leading anti-gambling watchdog.”

It filed an amicus brief in the federal case as well. 

Florida sports betting brief argument

No Casinos concluded its 33-page brief with the state Supreme Court as follows: 

“Petitioners are correct: Allowing mobile sports betting throughout the State, based on a legal fiction that Tribal servers render the entire State to be Indian land for mobile gambling purposes, undermines this State’s public policy, as expressed in article X, section 30, Florida Constitution, to disallow such gambling in Florida absent approval by citizen initiative.

“This Court should act to preclude the unconstitutional Compact and its implementing statutes from taking effect. Until and unless the voters authorize state-wide sports betting, this Court has the discretionary power and, we think, the duty to invalidate the Respondents’ actions in approving the sports betting provisions of the Compact and in passing implementing statutes. This Court should grant the writ.”

Florida sports betting battle rages on

Last week, the US Supreme Court granted a temporary stay to the mandate. It would have allowed the Seminole Tribe of Florida to relaunch its Hard Rock Bet app.

The Seminoles essentially have a monopoly on the Sunshine State’s sports betting market through the gaming compact that was agreed to with DeSantis in 2021

The Department of the Interior has until Wednesday to respond. 

Legal relaunch timeline remains TBD

With the case in two courts, it remains unclear when Florida will have legal sports betting again. 

However, the Seminole do seem to be preparing for when that happens. 

On Thursday, they are having a sportsbook agent hiring event at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla