However, ratifying the proposed amendment would not make gambling lawful on its own. Instead, it would give the state legislature a say and allow them to vote.
The Bill, Referred to the House Committee on Judiciary
On January 10, the new bill, which has the support of Representative Todd Rutherford, was introduced in the state House. The amendment proposal has already been forwarded to the House Judiciary Committee.
If it passes, it will empower the legislature to add a new part to the constitution, allowing various sorts of gambling to become a legal and tangible reality in the Palmetto State. A variety of popular gambling activities, such as pari-mutuel betting on horse races, sports betting, and online casino games, would be included on the list.
To modify the state constitution in South Carolina, the bill would need two-thirds of the votes in the state House, followed by referendum approval. The South Carolina Legislative Session, which begins on the second Tuesday of each new year, started on Tuesday and will conclude on May 22, 2023.
The Ongoing Saga
Last February, the same Richland County delegate introduced a new bill that would legalize sports betting, horse racing, card games, dice games, and electronic game devices in the state.
The announcement comes just days after state governor candidate Joe Cunningham announced his explicit support for sports betting legalization, citing the enormous number of American sports fans who were able to wager on Super Bowl LVI – something South Carolinians were not allowed to do.
House Bill 5277 was introduced in the state House in April 2022, with backing from the same representative Tom Rutherford and fellow representative, William Herbkersman. If it had been passed, the bill would have altered current legislation rather than the state constitution, making sports wagering legal.
The US Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina revealed in December that an unlawful gambling enterprise had been found thanks to a collaborative investigation by Homeland Security Investigations and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.
Bubba Technology Group, LLC, which operated its illegal gambling company from Piedmont, was sentenced in court. After pleading guilty, the firm agreed to relinquish all of its illicit operating revenues and say goodbye to dozens of unlicensed gambling machines, in addition to the money confiscated from gaming establishments with ties to the organization.