Supreme Court Upholds Sports Gambling Ban

Governor Chris Christie operates as the voice of New Jersey residents. As such, in 2011 he signed into legislation a legalized sports gambling packet. That meant that New Jersey citizens and visitors could legally place wagers on their favorite sports teams, something the Garden State constituency had been proposing for some time. But before any New Jersey resident could bet on the home team New York Giants or New York Jets of the National Football League, who both play out of the state’s MetLife Stadium, the NCAA filed suit against the state of New Jersey to block the legislation. The suit has no affect on the legal Atlantic City sports betting sites operating overseas, nor will it affect Atlantic city online casino or online poker gambling options.

What the Heck is PASPA, and Why is It Relevant Here?

The National Collegiate Athletic Association claims that the 1992 creation of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) trumps individual state’s rights as regards betting on their sports teams. The NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB professional sports leagues agreed that possible tampering could create a less than legitimate product on the field, and joined the NCAA in that lawsuit. Judges agreed, and sports gambling as offered by New Jersey-based businesses was made illegal. Recently, Christie filed an appeal with the highest court in the land, the United States Supreme Court, to repeal that 20 year old legislation under unconstitutional claims.

One Line Supreme Court Response to NJ Sports Gambling Appeal Agrees With Ban

After reading petitions offered by both NCAA and New Jersey attorneys, the Supreme Court offered a one sentence, one line comment, stating that they would not hear the state of New Jersey’s appeal. So currently, as has been the case in the past, the Supreme Court agreement with the NJ sports gambling ban means that businesses located in New Jersey cannot offer the state’s residents any sports gambling options. This fortunately does not affect the legally licensed offshore sportsbooks located outside the United States. These established companies own certification in international jurisdictions where Internet gambling is a regulated industry, and therefore can provide a viable product to New Jersey and US sports gamblers.

NJ Sports Betting Legalization Fight Far From Over

Going forward, the New Jersey fight to deliver state-based sports wagering options for real money is nowhere near over. Those living in the state of New Jersey, by a vast majority, favor legalized and state-run local sports betting options, either online or off. Governor Chris Christie and NJ Senator Ray Lesniak, the author of the current sports gambling bill which has been defeated, both vehemently argue that the 1992 PASPA legislation infringes on constitutional state’s rights. And in a late 2013 Third Circuit Court of Appeals 2 – 1 decision, sports gambling was shut down again, but a powerful ally may have been made.

Vanaskie, Shipp Provide Strong Pro-State Allies in Gambling Argument

Judge Thomas Vanaskie provided the lone dissenting vote in that split opinion, stating that it was his belief that PASPA interpretation is incorrect in its assumption that Congress has the power to tell states if they can or cannot regulate sports gambling. The Vanaskie PASPA opinion agrees with U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp’s belief that New Jersey, and other states, should be allowed to make a sports gambling decision on their own. Atlantic City-based gambling online currently means Internet casino table games and virtual poker. With Lesniak vowing not to give up the fight anytime soon, and a state full of residents bound and determined to place sports wagers through either state-run organizations or legitimately licensed offshore sportsbooks, look for more news on the NJ sports gambling front before the year is out.