Moves to introduce single-game sports betting in Canada have been given some added momentum courtesy of Liberal Party of Ontario candidate Sandra Pupatello. But her calls for change have not been without political fallout.
During a recent press conference Pupatello declared that she intends to get legislation passed where her New Democrat Party rival in Windsor West, Brian Masse, failed to do so. She did, however, credit Masse for his role in getting the issue moving.
Quoted by the Edmonton Journal, Pupatello said: “We need to change our laws to allow for single-sports betting in order to be more competitive and capture more of the revenue that is currently going offshore or to unregulated or illegal beneficiaries. The Canadian Gaming Association estimates this would add up to 150 jobs right here in Windsor, perhaps another 100 in Niagara Falls.”
Adding further empirical weight to her argument, she predicted that a change of law to allow sports betting could result in another 1,000 or 1,500 jobs across Canada, with revenue for provincial governments increasing by as much as a billion dollars.
Masse, who had his own sports betting bill voted down by the Liberals in the last Parliament, responded by accusing the party of hypocrisy and playing at politics. He told press that the NDP’s own sports betting bill had been way ahead of the United States, having garnered support from the provinces, provincial gaming authorities and chambers of commerce. He added that his bill had the support of all the national sports leagues barring the National Hockey League.
Pupatello, in turn, believes that the landscape for single-sports event betting has changed significantly from when Masse first introduced his bill.