Judge rejects Seminole Tribe's bid for stay on Florida sports betting

A federal judge on Wednesday denied a bid to stop a halt on the Seminole Tribe’s statewide online sports betting after the tribe’s lawyers argued it would “lose substantial revenue,” the Orlando Sentinel reported.

Federal Judge Dabney Friedrich earlier this week overturned a ruling on the Seminole Tribe’s online sports betting, claiming that the arrangement between the tribe and the state of Florida allowed sports betting to happen anywhere in the state instead of solely on the Seminole Tribe's property, going against the Indian Gaming Regulation Act. 

The Seminole Tribe rejected that argument, whose lawyers claimed that its members would lose money if they were not able to operate online sports betting, and claimed that the arrangement is legal because its servers operate on tribal land. 

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The Sentinel reported that online bets were still being received by the Hard Rock Sportsbook at least since Thursday morning, and it is unclear if the app will continue to be operational despite the judge’s stay.

Friedrich said in her decision that while Florida and the tribe could come to a new agreement over sports betting, it could not include online betting. She also claimed that the tribe had not demonstrated why a stay on the decision was necessary, saying the tribe had not proved it would suffer significant harm due to the loss of online betting, WFLA reported.

It was not immediately clear if the tribe will appeal the decision. D.C Circuit Court of Appeals would be the next court for the tribe to file for a stay if it chooses to do so, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

The Hill has reached out to the Seminole Tribe of Florida for comment.