Friday November 1, 2013 : CANADA’S SPORTS BETTING BILL IS NOT DEAD YET
Senators thought it would run out of time, but C-290 is a private member bill.
The quest for single bet sports wagering, on the agenda since its introduction by Canadian MP Joe Comartin back in 2011 continues, with the measure still alive when parliament returned to work on October 16 after the summer recess.
Our readers will recall that bill C-290 is designed to bring Canadian betting laws into the 21st century by permitting single bet wagering instead of the present restrictive legalization that players must bet on a minimum of three events or sports.
Comartin introduced his bill in 2011 and it sailed through the House of Commons. Everyone assumed it would do the same through the Senate, which usually rubber-stamps laws passed in the Commons.
However, a number of die-hard Senators ensured that it remained bogged down at the third reading stage, and a long blockade of the measure commenced that culminated in what C-290 opponents assumed would be defeat through running out of time when parliament broke for this year’s summer recess.
What the Senators didn’t realize was that C-290 is a private member’s bill, and remained alive when parliament reconvened last month.
However, the opposition has shown that it is determined and capable of blocking even a popular bill indefinitely – in this case for almost two years – and observers expect further delays before sense returns to the Senate.