Sports gambling, horse wagering stay on track for Cherokees


RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Gambling operations run by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in western North Carolina could soon let patrons bet on pro and college sporting events and off-track horse racing should legislation clearing a state Senate committee becomes law.

The Senate Commerce Committee voted on Wednesday for the measure, which now heads to another Senate panel.

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The Eastern Band is seeking the new options following a U.S. Supreme Court decision last year striking down a federal law that made most sports gambling illegal. Current law already lets the tribe offer live poker, slot machines and video-style games on tribal lands. The additional gambling could bring another $1 million annually to state government.

The measure cleared the committee despite opposition from conservative Christian groups against the expansion of any gambling.