CAPITOL WEEKLY PODCAST: Gambling is big business in California, and it could be even bigger business, depending on what happens with propositions 26 and 27, each of which would expand sports betting opportunities in the state – albeit in very different ways. However, current polling indicates serious trouble ahead for each of these measures: despite nearly $600 million spent by various factions, the most likely outcome appears to be a continuation of the status quo.
Though we have covered gaming expansion attempts many times over the years, we’re no gambling experts – but our guest, Richard Schuetz, is. Schuetz’ resume is fascinating: he got his start as dealer in Las Vegas casinos, and he worked his way up to heading one of the largest gaming operations in the country. He has extensive experience in both commercial and tribal gaming enterprises, and Gov. Jerry Brown appointed him to the Gambling Control Commission in 2011, where he served until 2015. He joined us this episode from Pennsylvania, where he weighed in on the current proposals, the history of online gaming, the profound differences between commercial gaming operations and those operated by tribal organizations, and what tattoo Prop. 27 backers should get.
1:35 What drew you to gambling?
3:12 How popular is gambling?
4:49 Will online gaming kill the casinos?
6:50 Propositions 26 and 27
10:00 What is the size of the market for online gaming in California?
14:39 How has the perception of gaming changed over the years?
18:33 Does pitching gaming revenue as a support for popular programs, like education and homeless services, work?
21:22 Rod Wright mention!
22:35 Commercial casinos compared to Tribal casinos
25:49 What happens next with gaming proposals?
26:54 “Never underestimate the power of the tribes in California”
31:10 Any regrets?