On Wednesday, the Florida Legislature, approved a gambling deal with the Seminole Tribe which allows for legalized sports betting in the state. The deal still has to be approved by the Department of the Interior, which regulates all tribal gambling.
It requires that all sports bets statewide go through the Seminole Tribe. Meaning, a person could place their wager on a cell phone at home or at a facility that contracts with the tribe, but that bet would eventually have to be processed by servers on tribal land.
That provision, among others, opens the deal up to significant legal challenges. Anti-gambling groups are already promising federal and state lawsuits to stop the deal in its tracks.
Federally, critics point to a 2018 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit decision on computerized bingo as evidence the Seminole deal may not be lawful. The court found a California Native American tribe violated federal law by allowing the game, because the bets did not “occur on Indian lands.”