President-elect Donald Trump will be the first president to have a history in the casino business. Because of this, gaming operators are now wondering if his background will affect the casino industry of the United States. Currently, the casino industry produces $240 billion a year and many are wondering if Trump will have a positive or negative effect.
American Gaming Association President and CEO, Geoff Freeman, has already used his position to reach out to the transition team of Trump by sending a memo to the soon to be president. In the memo, the AGA stated they are eager to work with the administration of Trump and discussed how the AGA hopes to build a policy environment that will be conducive to the reinvestment of innovation.
In the past, Trump Entertainment Resorts has owned seven casinos spread throughout the US including in California, New Jersey and Indiana. Over the years, Trump sold or closed the venues. Freeman feels that Trump could help casinos by creating an environment that will welcome international investors as well as foreign travelers.
Along with casino gaming, sports betting and daily fantasy sports are hot topics of debate in the United States. These are subjects that gaming operators want Trump to weigh in on. A brief was filed not long ago by six states, including Mississippi before the Supreme Court that could bring sports betting to the restricted states in the US. Currently, federal law only allows sports betting in four states, with Nevada offering the most options. Trump has supported an expansion of sports betting in the past and the AGA is hoping that the administration will weigh in on the topic.
Freeman stated that “president-elect Trump has expressed his views on sports betting and appears to agree that current law has failed. We are optimistic that states will soon have the opportunity to choose if they wish to regulate sports betting in the same way they have chosen to regulate other gaming products.”
The AGA has reported that the federal ban on sports betting has driven an illegal underground market that earns at least $150 billion on an annual basis. Casinos and gaming jurisdictions will be watching to see what happens in the Supreme Court case as justices could decide whether or not to hear the case on sports betting by next year.