Friday, December 7, 2012

New Jersey Sports Betting Lawsuit Update

In the last couple of weeks there have been a couple of events regarding the lawsuit challenging New Jersey's efforts to initiate sports betting.  Several sports organizations (read leagues) filed suit invoking the federal Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) to keep New Jersey out of the sports betting business.  PASPA, passed in 1993, bans sports betting in all but 4 "grandfathered" states - Nevada, Oregon, Delaware and Montana.

The first event was the ruling by the judge to deny the motion by the leagues to push back the court timetable of the case by 30 days.  The New Jersey interests opposed this motion and the judge sided with New Jersey.  The article on that event can be found here.

The second event was the State of New Jersey filing a brief directly challenging the constitutionality of PASPA.  This is the event that I think will eventually spell the doom of PASPA, and allow any state if it wishes to allow sports betting.  The article on this story can be found here.

The key argument from the brief quoted in the article is very strong and I don't think the sports leagues or the US Government can refute:
“PASPA does not seek to curtail sports wagering by directly prohibiting such activity in some or all states,” New Jersey’s lawyers wrote in the brief. “Instead, it mandates that certain states not ‘authorize by law or compact’ sports wagering and thereby requires those same states to maintain and enforce their pre-existing bans on sports wagering. The Tenth Amendment, under established precedent, does not permit the federal government to ‘commandeer’ state legislative and enforcement functions in such a manner.”
Its one thing for the federal government to exercise its authority to regulate interstate commerce.  What it can't do is mandate restrictions on the sovereign authority of a state with regard to its ability to craft state law.

The other argument here is that under the Constitution, the federal government does not have plenary police power like the states have.  In other words, states have full ability to regulate health, welfare, safety and morality of its citizens - the federal government does not.  The federal system is based on a central government of limited enumerated powers.  The regulation of gambling within a state has always been the purview of the states.  That is why some states allow lotteries or horse racing and some don't.

The next big event will the depositions of several sports league commissioners, initially scheduled for mid-December.  The outcome of those depositions will be of great interest to how this case proceeds.

Add to Technorati Favorites


Unknown said...

Great thoughts and ideas are what the readers are looking for, good thing you have it here on your blog, keep up the good work! :)
Miles | Asian Handicap Sportsbook

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
northbetsportsbook said...

That Governor must lose on this and lose success...every state doesn't would like legal would solely serve to destroy businesses and increase vice crime, narcotraffic and therefore the like! Our Governor did his utmost best to usher in casinos and it might have destroyed this state's already a poor state

Unknown said...

I read your blogs regularly. Your humoristic way is amusing, continue the good work! sport health benefits