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The Supreme Court after a recent decision on sports betting. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Professional sports leagues like the NBA and NFL are asking for sweeping federal laws on sports betting, but things may not play out in their favor.

Big picture: Leagues want to ensure they get a percentage of the action via "integrity fees," but some states have already decided not to include them in their proposed policies.

Integrity fees are a percentages of sports betting profit paid to governing sports bodies for oversight into betting operations. They currently exist in Europe and Australia.

  • Christopher Soriano, a gaming lawyer at Duane Morris, says integrity fees are a way for leagues to keep a clean image while de-stigmatizing sports betting.
  • Long tail: The per-bet percentages are nominally small (typically 1%), but in aggregate represent a guaranteed revenue source worth lobbying for.
  • That doesn't mean it will happen: "It's hard to get Congress to agree on anything," Soriano says. Plus, he adds that federal legislators won't feel much pressure to act because many states already are developing their own sports betting legislation.

States with sports betting laws in place:

None of those states' sports betting laws include integrity fees. Namely because they would reduce the amount states receive. "Even one percent is a very large amount of the money," Soriano explains.

  • Two outliers could be New York and Indiana, where integrity fees have been discussed as part of proposed sports betting bills.

Sports league lobbyists argue that costs incurred from monitoring betting activity would be offset by revenue from integrity fees. New York State Senator John Bonacic told The Washington Post that a fee would be "fair" considering "more of a demand" on sports leagues.

Go deeper

Changing the inflation conversation

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Inflation looks like it’ll run hot for longer than plenty of smart people thought it would. The conversation over just how much more Americans will have to pay for their stuff has taken on a new intensity, as supply problems show few signs of fading.

Why it matters: The rate of price growth has remained consistently strong in recent months — a time that some thought would bring cooling prices after an initial reopening spike. What goes on with prices will influence the decisions made by Congress, the Biden Administration, and the Federal Reserve.

The biggest headline from Biden's town hall

President Biden greets attendees during a commercial break in Baltimore last night. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

What matters from President Biden's town hall with CNN's Anderson Cooper at Baltimore Center Stage on Thursday, via Axios night owl Hans Nichols:

The biggest headline: Biden is jettisoning the corporate tax increases that White House officials have insisted, for the past 10 months, are wildly popular across the country. He admitted he doesn't have the votes.

Trump, your 2024 GOP nominee

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Former President Trump is telling most anyone who'll listen he will run again in 2024 — and poll after poll shows the vast majority of Republicans would gladly cheer him on and vote for him. 

Why it matters: Trump is the heart, soul and undisputed leader of the Republican Party and will easily win the nomination if he wants it, the polls make unmistakably clear.

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