Australian Senator Criticizes Election Betting

Posted: January 31, 2013

Updated: October 4, 2017

Senator slams Sportingbet for election betting ad.

Aussie senator Nick Xenophon is calling for changes to the Australian gambling laws ahead of general elections in September, to make betting on election results illegal.

The independent Senator who is known for his anti-gambling stance has justified his remarks by pointing out that either the candidates or party officials could use unpublished polling info to their personal enrichment.

“When people can bet on an election outcome then surely there is a risk of corruption in the process, particularly if you are a candidate, if you are a party insider, a party official or a pollster, where you can get an unfair advantage in terms of what the outcome can be,” stated Senator Xenophon.

The call to ban such bets comes after the Australian arm of the major internet betting company Sportingbet ran a full-page promotion of its political betting product in national papers.

Sportingbet – soon to be acquired by William Hill – rejected the allegations that betting integrity could be threatened. “Sportingbet Australia has never had any integrity issues on election betting in the past and does not expect to have any in the future,” declared CEO Michael Sullivan.

He also used the opportunity to point out those living in the state of South Australia are already excluded from such bets by law. Should election betting be prohibited in Australia, punters would simply resort to online or mobile betting through unregulated offshore sites according to Sullivan.

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