Las Vegas Sun

October 24, 2014

Currently: 69° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Betting on presidential elections? Nevada state senator says its time has come

If a Nevada state senator gets his way, gamblers could have a new kind of horse race to bet on.

On Monday, Las Vegas Democrat Tick Segerblom, D-Las Vegas, introduced a bill in the Nevada Legislature to legalize betting on federal elections.

“Simply to make money for the state,” said Segerblom, chairman of the state Senate’s Judiciary Committee, when asked why he was pushing the law. “I’ve been following elections and betting in London, and (gaming companies there) are making a fortune. Why not do it here?”

Segerblom said betting on the presidential election is “one of the biggest moneymakers in all of betting outside the United States,” something to which gaming company executives have testified. A few days before last year’s presidential election, Irish bookmaker Paddy Power told CNN it had more than $1.6 million in bets placed on the presidential election, including who would win head-to-head and who would win different swing states.

The law would allow betting on Senate, congressional and presidential campaigns. Segerblom said he would be open to allow bets on state elections as well, and said the law could also allow bets on the Academy Awards and other cultural events.

He dismissed concerns of corruption.

“Let’s be frank here. You’re not going to throw a federal election in the United States,” Segerblom said, noting sports gambling hasn’t led to widespread corruption: “What’s unique about football? Has football been corrupted? I don’t think so.”

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 2 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. about time

  2. If I were a casino, I wouldn't take presidential bets. With polling and predictive technologies, it would be a huge loser for the casino.

    A former writer for Baseball Prospectus, Nate Silver used the algorithms hr created while at the Prospectus to predict the election, and he picked the winner from all 50 states. If he can do that with the technologies available now, imagine what will be available in a few years.