November 9, 2022 | Press Release

California Voters Overwhelmingly Reject Prop 27 – the Corporate Online Gambling Proposition

California Voters Overwhelmingly Reject Prop 27 – the Corporate Online Gambling Proposition

NO on 27 campaign reveals three key reasons Prop 27 was defeated by a wide margin

For Immediate Release: November 8, 2022
Contact: Kathy Fairbanks, (916) 813-1010

Sacramento, CA –The Coalition for Safe, Responsible Gaming, NO on Prop 27 coalition, made up of more than 450 members including California Indian tribes, social justice advocates, public safety leaders, education, labor, seniors, state and local elected officials, both major political parties and advocates for the homeless, declared victory as it became clear voters overwhelmingly rejected Proposition 27.

On Tuesday 11/8, the Associated Press officially called the Prop 27 race with 84% of California voters rejecting Prop 27.

“We are grateful to California voters who rejected out-of-state gambling corporations’ deceptive measure and once again stood with California Indian tribes,” said Greg Sarris, Tribal Chairman of the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria. “Today’s vote is a show of support for tribal self-reliance and a total rejection of corporate greed.”

According to extensive data, polling and analytics conducted by the Coalition for Safe, Responsible Gaming’s NO on Prop 27 campaign, there were three key reasons Prop 27 was overwhelmingly defeated by voters:

  1. Intense voter opposition to online & mobile sports betting.
    • In November 2021 – shortly after the corporate operators filed Prop 27 – early   polling by FM3 Research showed strong voter opposition to the concept of “legalizing online and mobile sports wagering via smartphone apps, tablets and computers.”
      • Only 31% of likely voters supported the concept, while 51% opposed.
    • Polling also showed the most effective messages against Proposition 27 tapped into intense voter concerns about the perils of online gambling. From the November 2021 survey by FM3 Research:
      • 72% of likely voters indicated that messages outlining that “online gambling is far more addictive” and “especially attractive to youth and those prone to impulsive gambling” were convincing, with 46% of likely voters rating the argument about youth gambling “very convincing.”
      • 68% of voters said the argument “there is no proven way to stop kids and teens from gambling online” was convincing, with 46% of voters rating this argument “very convincing.”
  2. Early framing by the Coalition for Safe, Responsible Gaming’s NO on Prop 27 campaign successfully defined Prop 27 as a “massive expansion of online gambling.”
    • Our NO on Prop 27 campaign launched a multi-million-dollar statewide television, radio, digital TV and digital advertising campaign in the spring of 2022, framing Prop 27 as “a massive expansion of online gambling,” and reinforcing voter concerns about problem and youth gambling.
      • By the time the YES on 27 campaign launched its massive and unprecedented advertising campaign in early July, our campaign’s daily awareness and perception tracking conducted by FM3 Research showed more than 55% of likely voters were already opposed to Prop 27, with support in the low 30s.
  3. Position of California Indian tribes is very important to voters.
    • Unlike the out-of-state corporate operators behind Prop 27, voters have long seen Indian tribes as highly credible. Internal polling by the Coalition for Safe, Responsible Gaming’s NO on Prop 27 campaign shows tribes have a 3-to-1 favorability rating with voters. This has remained virtually unchanged over the course of the campaign.
    • The YES on 27 campaign unsuccessfully tried to convince voters that Prop 27 was supported by tribes. Our coalition ran a simple TV advertisement showing that 50+ tribes opposed Prop 27, while only 3 tribes supported it.
    • Daily awareness and perception tracking conducted by FM3 Research showed voters received clarity on where tribes stood on the issue and quickly moved to oppose Prop 27.

“The corporate operators thought they could waltz into California, throw their money around, mislead voters and score a victory. Big mistake,” said Beth Glasco, Vice-Chairwoman of the Barona Band of Mission Indians. “Voters are smart. They saw through the false promises in Prop 27. The corporations completely misjudged California voters and the resolve of our tribal nations.”

“Our internal polling has been clear and consistent for years: California voters do not support online sports betting,” said Anthony Roberts, Tribal Chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. “Voters have real and significant concerns about turning every cell phone, laptop and tablet into a gambling device, the resulting addiction and exposure to children.”

“It’s clear voters don’t want a massive expansion of online sports betting, and they trust Indian tribes when it comes to responsible gaming,” said Mark Macarro, Tribal Chairman of the Pechanga Band of Indians. “As tribes, we will analyze these results, and collectively have discussions about what the future of sports wagering might look like in California.”

Tribes made clear that defeating Prop 27 was always the number-one priority, even with tribal-backed Prop 26 on the ballot. Prop 26 was originally intended for the 2020 ballot, but the pandemic shutdown in March 2020 halted signature gathering, and the measure subsequently qualified for the 2022 election. Once Prop 27 was filed with the California Attorney General in August 2021, tribes’ sole focus shifted to defeating Prop 27. Our campaign spent no money on traditional advertising in support of Prop 26.


Out-of-state, online gambling corporations like DraftKings, BetMGM and FanDuel were behind Prop 27 – a deceptive measure that would have legalized online and mobile sports gambling in California – turning virtually every cell phone, laptop and tablet into a gambling device.

Prop 27 was opposed by a broad coalition of more than 50 California Indian tribes, educators, civil rights and public safety leaders, advocates for the homeless and every major newspaper editorial board in California.