Congresswoman Titus Still Railing Against Federal Excise Gambling Tax

Congresswoman Dina Titus continues to advocate for repealing the federal excise tax on sports betting operators, even when she’s not actually there.

In a 15-minute video presentation at the SBC Americas sports betting conference, the Nevada Democrat and co-chair of the Congressional Gaming Caucus reiterated that the .25% tax on handle “serves no dedicated purpose.” It strengthens the position of illegal offshore options and diminishes the ability of regulated sportsbooks to offer a more attractive product.

Studies have pegged the percentage of national sports betting handle controlled by unregulated offshore markets as high as 65%. Titus’ 2023 attempt at change gained bipartisan support but not enough to advance.

Titus further objects to the tax because it’s funneled into the General Fund rather than toward responsible gambling measures. That said, Titus opposes the Gambling Addiction Recovery, Investment, and Treatment Act, which would target half of the national excise tax for that purpose.

“I’m all for investing in responsible gaming resources,” Titus said in the video. “We do it in Nevada and want to prevent problem gaming. However, using the handle to do this only hurts the legal operators. Operators already invest millions of dollars into responsible gaming resources and research and each state sets aside money for this issue.”

Titus Poses Gambling Integrity Points

Titus continued her video by outlining her plan for professional sports leagues to heighten their integrity efforts.

All four major pro sports leagues in the United States dealt with some sort of sports betting controversy within the past year. In MLB, it was Shohei Ohtani interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. In the NFL, several players, including Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams. Shane Pinto in the NHL was suspended, and NBA player Jontay Porter was recently banned for betting on league games and aiding gamblers.

Titus’ recommendations (some of which are already practiced by various leagues):

  • Simplify integrity rules and expectations.
  • Create a public database that catalogs infractions and penalties.
  • In-person gambling seminars made mandatory for players and anyone involved with teams.
  • Poll players yearly to ensure that policies are understood.
  • Ban player betting or promotion of illegal sportsbooks.

“Increased education of players and coaches about league policies regarding sports betting would assure fans that the games they watch and often bet own are indeed fair,” Titus said during the video. “I found that while the leagues take these issues seriously and have developed some comprehensive rules and programs to ensure compliance, they still have more work to do to publicize transparency measures, increase education efforts, clarify the rules, and standardize the penalties.”


About the Author
Brant James

Brant James

Lead Writer
Brant James is a lead writer who covers the sports betting industry and legislation at Gaming Today. An alum of the Tampa Bay Times,, espnW,, and USA Today, he's covered motorsports and the NHL as beats. He also once made a tail-hook landing on an aircraft carrier with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and rode to the top of Mt. Washington with Travis Pastrana. John Tortorella has yelled at him numerous times.

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