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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Six states have legalized sports betting since the Supreme Court's monumental decision last May, but New Jersey is the only one exceeding revenue expectations.

Why it matters: These disappointing results are part of a "growing consensus that legal sports betting may not bring the windfall that economic forecasters predicted only a few months ago," the New York Times' Timothy Williams reports.

By the numbers: West Virginia has collected only a quarter of the monthly tax revenue it projected, and Pennsylvania and Mississippi have collected only half.

  • Rhode Island has done even worse, bringing in $50,000 per month after predicting they'd bring in almost $1 million.
  • Delaware is meeting projections, but it's thanks in large part to a football-betting operation that's been around since 2009.

Be smart ... The real story here is New Jersey, which has brought in more than $2 billion in the last 10 months thanks to one simple fact: New Jersey allows bettors to place online bets from their smartphones.

  • Meanwhile, most of these struggling states require bettors to place their bets in casinos, which — surprise, surprise — nobody wants to do. Other states like Pennsylvania have legalized mobile betting but still don't offer it.
  • Following New Jersey's lead and getting mobile sports betting up and running seems like the obvious answer to these states' revenue problems. Unfortunately, a little something called politics will make that a slow and complicated process, as casinos continue to apply pressure on legislators.

The big picture:

"Right now, I'd say the [casino-only] camp has more momentum simply because many policymakers aren't comfortable with online gambling. Fast-forward a couple years, and I think we'll see a lot of [casino-only] states adding online as they see that online is where the customer — and therefore, the tax revenue — predominantly resides."
— Chris Grove, managing director of sports and emerging verticals at Eilers & Krejcik Gaming

The bottom line: In 2019, people want to bet through an app from the comfort of their couch instead of getting in their car and driving to a run-down casino. Who knew?!

Go deeper: Sports betting is only going to get more mainstream

Go deeper

Biden headed to the Hill as Democrats struggle to reach deal on spending bills

President Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi leave a House Democratic Caucus meeting in the U.S. Capitol on Oct. 1. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

President Biden on Thursday morning will meet with the House Democratic Caucus on Capitol Hill to provide an update about his Build Back Better agenda and the bipartisan infrastructure deal, according to a White House official.

Driving the news: The meeting comes as Democrats struggle to reach a deal on the spending bills. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told CNN on Sunday that Democrats were planning to reach an agreement on the infrastructure package this week, before Biden's departure to Europe, which is slated for later on Thursday.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
49 mins ago - Economy & Business

Why it's so hard to tax wealth

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The wealth tax that wasn't a wealth tax isn't even a tax, now. The Democrats had a meticulously constructed 107-page proposal to pay for a large chunk of their spending plans with a tax on billionaires, but it died ignobly on Wednesday, the same day it was unveiled.

Why it matters: The dream of a wealth tax will never die as it so neatly generates revenue by reducing inequality. But there are three main reasons why that dream is likely to remain just a dream for the foreseeable future.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
2 hours ago - Health

Public health messaging lessons for the next pandemic

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

"Be first, be right, be credible" is the mantra of public health experts in a crisis. It's difficult to argue that the health community has regularly managed to be any of those three during COVID-19.

Why it matters: A pandemic isn't just a medical emergency — it's also a communications emergency. The U.S. public health establishment, hamstrung by bad data and political interference, has struggled with the latter.