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NC lawmaker who initially opposed sports betting supports new legislation

Over 40% of House lawmakers back new legislation to legalize online sports betting in North Carolina, but the bill still faces a long road to becoming law.

RALEIGH, N.C. — More than 40% of House lawmakers are backing new legislation to legalize mobile sports betting in North Carolina — a sign of broad, bipartisan support for an effort that failed in the last legislative session.

Among the lawmakers supporting the legislation: Democratic Leader Robert Reives, who voted against the bill last year.

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Four primary sponsors this week introduced HB 347, which would permit gambling on professional, college, Olympic and electronic sports from devices located in the state as soon as Jan. 1. Dozens of additional sponsors, including Reives, have since signed onto the bill nearly evenly split among Republicans and Democrats.

"I've had a chance to talk to some people and because my concern was when we went into that vote, a lot of us didn't know what we were voting on, who we were benefiting," Reives told WRAL in January. "And when you vote on something as serious as gambling, my position is I kind of need to know what the lay of the land is. And so we've had months now to really have a chance to sit down, talk, see how this fits all fits into an overall economic development scheme."

Click here to read more from WRAL.

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