Sports betting is a multi-billion dollar business across the globe, but it is still a new and unexplored frontier on American soil. Yet states across the nation are fighting to make offline sports betting a legal and thriving enterprise. New Jersey is the latest state to wage war against the federal ban on sports betting, citing that the federal ban is a violation of state’s rights.
Governor Chris Christie signed legislation in October that partially repealed the ban to allow sports betting in racetracks and casinos. Shortly after, the NCAA and the four major professional sports leagues filed a suit in hopes of stopping the legislation from taking place. The league claimed that the legislation was a flagrant attempt to violate federal law to operate, sponsor, license, advertise, or authorize gambling on any amateur or professional at casinos and horse racetracks.
New Jersey State Sen. Raymond Lesniak, says that general police powers gives the states the power to restrict where activities like sports betting can take place. In December, a New Jersey federal judge rejected the Christie’s bill legalizing sports betting in designated facilities, citing that the effort violates the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) – the federal law that currently bans sports betting in America. The upholding of the ban is a blow to owners of New Jersey casinos and racetracks.
The case has received national attention due to its implications for states’ rights and federalism issues, commerce, and anti-commandeering clauses in the Constitution. One of the main questions being, whether PASPA can prevent state efforts to allow sports betting without commandeering the state’s autonomy recognized in the Tenth Amendment.
In a world where Internet sports betting, fantasy gaming, and other forms of legalized gaming are embraced, many in the industry are questioning why sports betting is not allowed to operate in legal and regulated environments. Should New Jersey ever find a way to successfully challenge the ban, it would undoubtedly set off a chain reaction of legislation throughout the country as many states are desperate to find more profitable revenue streams in the recovering economy.
Most in the sports betting world, organized sports, and many legislators have conceded that the legalization of sports betting is inevitable. In the meantime online sports betting is a booming industry where enterprising individuals can make a fortune by offering consumers safe, legal sports betting opportunities. Learn more about starting your sports betting merchant account.