Commonwealth Policy Center

Today is the first day Kentuckians can legally place bets on sporting events. Many gamblers are enthusiastic. But not every Kentuckian shares the same sentiments. The rising popularity of sports gambling in America has been accompanied by dramatic rise in gambling addiction, particularly among young men. Also, many professional athletes are gambling on games, even despite prohibitions. Since the beginning of summer, 10 NFL players have been suspended because they’ve been involved with gambling. And pro golfer Phil Mickelson has allegedly bet $1 billion on various sporting events. State sponsored gambling exploits Kentuckians, especially the most economically disadvantaged. Another consideration is that sports gambling has the potential to corrupt the integrity of sporting events.