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Millions Pumped Into California Online Sports Betting Proposition Campaigns

Robert Linnehan

by Robert Linnehan in Sports Betting News

Updated Sep 14, 2022 · 11:08 AM PDT

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Sep 3, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner (10) is greeted by first baseman Freddie Freeman (5) after hitting a two run home run against the San Diego Padres during the fifth inning at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
  • Since September, DraftKings and FanDuel have donated nearly $20 million to Prop 27
  • This is in addition to $150 million the two have already donated to California sports betting initiatives
  • The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians recently contributed $25 million to a campaign opposing Prop 27

Millions of dollars are flowing into campaigns supporting and opposing California sports betting with just eight weeks remaining until the general election.

Since the start of September, DraftKings and FanDuel donated nearly $20 million in support of Proposition 27, which is in addition to $50 million the two contributed to the proposition earlier in the year.

Most Expensive Proposition Campaigns in State History

Since Sept. 1, FanDuel has contributed $10,005,000 and DraftKings contributed $9,224,611 for a total of $19.229 million to Prop 27.

Contributions in favor of Prop 27 have totaled more than $150 million since it received its spot on the general election ballot.

Prop 27, the “California Solutions to Homelessness and Mental Health Support Act,” aims to legalize California online sports betting for operators partnered with California Tribes. Prop 27 calls for a 10% tax on online sports betting, with 85% of tax revenues going to programs to help solve homelessness and those that support mental health. The remaining 15% of the tax revenues would be earmarked for California tribes not partnered with an operator.

Prop 27 has numerous supporters, including Major League Baseball and three small California tribes that have publicly endorsed the online sports betting initiative. The Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians, the Middletown Rancheria of Pomo Indians, and the Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi Yokut Tribe all released public statements in favor of the online sports betting initiative, praising the measure as a way for smaller, disadvantaged tribes to bolster their economic standing.

Money Flowing in Opposition of Prop 27

While millions have been contributed to the online sports betting initiative since early September, millions of dollars in opposition of Prop 27 have also been flowing since the start of September.

On Sept. 1 the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians contributed $25 million to the “No on 27 – Californians for Tribal Sovereignty and Safe Gaming, Sponsored by Tribal Organizations,” a campaign dedicated to defeating Prop 27.

Additionally, the Republican Party donated $500,000 to “No on 27” in early September, but also donated $2.5 million to a “No on 26” campaign dedicated to defeating California Tribal retail sports betting. Earlier in the summer the Republican Party of California voted to oppose both sports betting propositions.

California Democrats also voted earlier in the summer to oppose Prop 27, but unlike the Republican Party it has decided to remain neutral on Prop 26.

In August, four top California Democrats and GOP lawmakers announced their opposition to the online sports betting initiative. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D – Lakewood), Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins (D – San Diego), Assembly Republican Leader James Gallagher (R – Nicolaus) and Senate Republican Leader Scott Wilk (R – Santa Clarita) released a joint statement condemning Proposition 27 and its support of out-of-state sports betting companies.

“Prop 27 eliminates the sovereign right of California tribes to operate gaming in California. They have proven to be excellent stewards of this responsibility,” Wilk said in the released statement. “We should protect this tribal right, which has also benefited all Californians.”

Rendon urged voters to not support Proposition 27 in the statement, saying the state should not aid out-of-state companies over California tribes.

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