Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper on sports gambling and its future in Colorado

Feb 9, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado governor John Hickenlooper addresses the crowd during the Super Bowl 50 championship parade celebration at Civic Center Park. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

After the Supreme Court struck down a federal law prohibiting sports gambling Monday, questions remain on what wagering on sports will look like, particularly in Colorado as states now have the go-ahead to legalize betting on sports.

One thing is for sure, Colorado has progressed at a rapid pace on hot button cases with the latest being the legalization of recreational marijuana. But now gambling on sports is at the forefront of minds.

Speaking to Les Shapiro of Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper says society has become less restrictive and ‘looser,’ paving the way for recreational marijuana and now potentially sports gambling to be an everyday part of life.

“I think society is becoming less restrictive, looser, I think the legalization of recreational marijuana is one reflection of this,” Hickenlooper said. “I suspect sports gambling is another reflection of this.”

While the public eye becoming more accepting to sports gambling and the Supreme Court striking down the federal law that prohibits sports gambling — wagering on sports is on the horizon, but it’s going to take a vote of the people Hickenlooper says.

“In Colorado…title 18 of our constitution states that any gambling on sports is illegal, therefore there would have to be a vote of the people.”

Hickenlooper also says that while many individuals are doing it and much money is already being wagered — most of it illegally — that doesn’t make gambling automatically a good thing.

“Just because there’s a lot of money being wagered, doesn’t make it a good activity…I was told that only fools gamble what they can’t afford to lose. My father took it a step farther saying any gambling, you’re a fool.”

“To bet on sports teams, seems to me there are a lot better forms of recreation than that.”

Click here to listen to the full interview with Governor John Hickenlooper, including what he had to say about how quickly sports gambling could be in affect and what he would do with integrity fees and more, or listen to the podcast below.

Catch Afternoon Drive with Goodman and Shapiro every weekday from 4p-6p on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 or stream live any time for the best local coverage of Colorado sports from Denver’s biggest sports talk lineup. Download the all-new free Mile High Sports Radio mobile app for Apple or Android.

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