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Nevada Lawmaker Wants To Legalize Betting On Presidential Elections

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File photo of the Las Vegas strip. (photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

File photo of the Las Vegas strip. (photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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LAS VEGAS (CBS Las Vegas) – A Nevada state senator wants to create a law allowing people to place bets on presidential races at Las Vegas casinos.

“We bet on everything,” state Sen. Tick Segerblom, who proposed the law, told CBS News.

Political gambling income in Nevada could reach an estimated $50 million and generate $2 million in taxes.

Segerblom explained that not having political gambling in Nevada is “crazy and stupid, because it’s tax money that we should keep here as opposed to sending it overseas.”

Despite it being illegal, Americans in the early 1900s would gather outdoors in New York City to make their wagers on candidates. It was the called the curb exchange on Wall Street. The election that President Woodrow Wilson won in 1916 had an estimated $160 million wagered on it.

In Great Britain, gambling on American elections is legal. Close to $2 million was bet during the last election at Ladbrokes, a gaming establishment in the country.

“I can see we have Hillary Clinton as a 6-to-4 favorite, and then there is a massive gap to Marco Rubio and Chris Christie who are both in there 12 to 1. We have George Clooney at 200 to 1,” Alex Donohue, a spokesperson for Ladbrokes, told CBS News.

Some think that if gambling on candidates was legal,  it would increase voter turnout.

“Let me tell you something. If you could bet on the election, you’re gonna vote,” Jimmy Vaccaro, a Las Vegas oddsmaker, told CBS News. “Why not? It’s the first time you can actually have a say in the outcome of your money.”

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