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I should know, as I was the author of one of those op-eds . (For the record, I urged people to vote no on Amendment 3 because I believed that its passage would make it far more difficult to legalize sports betting.) On the day after Election Day, stunned at the landslide margin by which voters passed Amendment 3, I wondered where it all went so wrong. Could 71% of Florida voters really want to make it more difficult to legalize sports betting, when survey after survey (see here and here ) indicated broad support forlegalizing wagering on professional sporting events? Did the tens of millions of dollars of advertising spent by the sponsors and supporters of Amendment 3 none of which even mentioned sports betting sway voters? Or was there some other explanation? In searching for answers to these questions, I decided to re-examine the Amendment 3 petition form for clues.

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The UK government is mulling whether to restrict its citizens capacity to use their credit cards for gambling purposes, according to a new Tory minister. This week, Mims Davies, the Tory MP for Eastleigh and the recently appointed Minister for Sport and Civil Society, gave a speech at the industry-funded charity GambleAware s sixth annual harm-minimization conference in London. Davies (pictured) said her appointment followed an extremely progressive year of policy developments but warned that the publication of the Gambling Review did not mark the end of government action. Davies said the government supported the gambling industrys employment and investment, but there are risks and industry must mitigate those risks with appropriate protections. Davies emphasized the need for gambling operators to deliver early interventions, before harm occurs, adding that she wants to see rapid progress in this area. As an example, Davies said there were increasing concerns around people gambling on credit cards and whether this should be permitted. This is an area we are already looking into in detail to understand the full situation and to consider if action in this space is needed. Davies also warned that, while the recent increase in GambleAwares voluntary funding from industry was encouraging, the government wasnt ruling out a shift to other ways of funding support, including a mandatory levy if this voluntary system came up short again. The profits of gambling operators arent my prime concern. Ensuring problem gamblers have access to the right treatment is. Last month saw Davies replace former sports minister Tracey Crouch, who quit over a perceived delay in the governments plan to cut the maximum stakes on fixed-odds betting terminals. The government has since agreed to impose that stake cut by April 1, 2019 , SPORTS BETTING and to bring forward the planned hike in Remote Gaming Duty . The Tory government is on its back heels on the gambling brief, and any minister that isnt seeking an immediate return to the back benches would do well to rap some gambling operator knuckles to keep the anti-gambling media on board. In her speech, Davies said that accurate research is essential to progress on reducing gambling-related harm. Davies said she wanted to see a strong evidence base and praised Public Health England for committing to an evidence review. With any luck, Davies commitment to evidence-based policies will take into account that the UKs problem gambling rates have remained steadfastly constant over the years despite the increase in gambling availability and the hyperbolic claims of the likes of the Daily Mail.

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