Does 2025 Look Better For Alabama Sports Betting?

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Alabama sports betting

Despite a promising start, Alabama sports betting legalization efforts failed in 2024, and the outlook in 2025 does not hold the same hopeful shine. 

Senate President Pro-Tem Greg Reed told a Mobile radio station that the two legislative chambers remain divided on the topic. This year, the House passed a comprehensive gambling package, including Alabama sports betting, but the Senate stripped much of its content and it fell short of passage.

“I applaud the House and the Speaker of the House,” Reed told the Jeff Poor Show. “They had a very intense program. They worked diligently to come up with a package. We respected that, and the Senate kind of stood by the side while they moved forward on elements that were important to them. 

“But I had said all along, representing the attitude of the Senate, that our membership is not going to be as willing to go for some of the items that the House had proposed.”

Alabama chambers switch positions

Twice in recent sessions, the Senate passed comprehensive packages like the one the House sent to the upper chamber this year. The House, however, was unwilling to pass the legislation. 

This year, Sen. Greg Albritton told LSR prior to the session that the House would develop language similar to his previously successful legislation. The bill included a state lottery, casinos and online sports betting.

Alabama is one of five states without a state lottery.

Alabama sports betting a step too far

Once in the Senate, legislators stripped some of the casino language, including allowable games. 

It also removed sports betting. Once the package was in the conference committee, it was made clear sports betting would not be part of the final package.

“The Senate took what the House did, we modified it, changed it,” Reed said. “We eliminated some casinos. We eliminated some other elements of table games and those kinds of things. The sports betting program, some of those things our members just weren’t comfortable with.”

Can Alabama sports betting happen in 2025? 

Gambling is a regular topic in Alabama legislative sessions. Reed told the radio show more was accomplished in 2024 than any year before. 

He said the Senate will remain more conservative in its approach than the House.

“Was the attitude of the Senate willing to do gaming legislation during this session? And the answer is yes — it’s just that we weren’t willing as a Senate, based on the feedback from our membership, we weren’t willing to embrace all of the concepts that the House of Representatives had proposed,” Reed said. “As time went along, we wound up in a place to where this is the House position, this is the Senate position, and we pretty much weren’t going to move off those positions to get to an overall compromise.

“We’ll have to wait to see what the attitude is going to be of the membership and those that are interested in moving some of this legislation again in the next session. That will remain to be seen.”

Photo by Associated Press