Sports Leagues & DOJ Go to Court for Legalization of Sports Betting
It would seem New Jersey Governor Chris Christies is going to be attending court a lot in the coming weeks as he is currently being sued by major sports leagues as well as the United States Department of Justice who have filed a motion in court to prevent the legalization of Sports Betting in New Jersey.
After New Jersey Governor Chris Christies decriminalized sports betting a few weeks back there has been both positive feedback on behalf of the people that voted for it to be legalized as far back as 2012 as well as negative comments by those who feel that legalizing sports betting will, according to the big sports leagues, “threaten the integrity of those sports”.
The sports leagues that have risen against New Jersey’s legalization are: the National Football League (NFL), the National Hockey League (NHL), the National Basketball Association (NBA), Major League Baseball (MLB) and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). They have said that the decriminalization by Governor Christies is a “blatant violation” of the court order of 2012 by the Department of Justice that effectively blocked the state from regulating any form of sports betting.
Among the arguments out forward by the sports leagues is that of regulation and despite the decriminalization, which makes any regulation unnecessary, the sports leagues still say that the state will be regulating the betting. They argue that the casinos and racetracks, the places authorized to accept wagers on sports betting, are regulated by the state and therefore any gambling offered by them will be regulated as well.
The move to decriminalize sports betting and to allow for non-regulated sports betting to take place in New Jersey has been labelled, by the professional sports leagues, was an absurd way to interpret any rulings by the courts. The battle, which began in 2012, was ultimately foiled by Judge Michael Shipp who sided with the sports leagues despite overwhelming support by New Jersey locals and is the same judge that will hear the arguments this time round.
Sports’ betting has long been seen as a way to help Atlantic City’s stumbling casinos revive the once thriving seaside resort town and to allow the casinos to compete with the new casinos located neighboring states such which have effectively blocked the path to Atlantic City.
The court cases are set to be heard in the coming weeks and so far it is nearly impossible to forecast any eventual outcome. If New Jersey fail in its latest bid to legalize sports betting, it could well be the last time they try as they will undoubtedly come under intense scrutiny from various Government organizations that refuse to allow any form of sports betting to take place within casinos in the state.
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