New Jersey sports betting law denied by Federal Appeals court

A Federal Appeals court upheld a ruling on Tuesday that inhibits the legalization of sports gambling in New Jersey.

Presided by a three-judge panel in Philadelphia, the court said that legalizing sports gambling in the state would conflict with federal law and could potentially compromise the integrity of the games.

The NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and NCAA all sued New Jersey last year, and Bud Selig, in a court deposition, said he was “appalled” by the governor’s support of the intended law.

The state could attempt to have the case re-heard by a full appeals court, according to the Associated Press, but in all likelihood, New Jersey’s best chance could be in front of the U.S. Supreme Court. Governor Chris Christie has said that he would consider taking the issue to the highest court.

State prosecutors tried to argue that the current law, enacted in 1992, violates state sovereignty. 

Part of the court’s response included the following:

“We are cognizant that certain questions related to this case – whether gambling on certain sporting events is harmful to the games’ integrity and whether states should be permitted to license and profit from the activity – engender strong views. …New Jersey’s sports wagering law conflicts with PASPA [Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act] and, under our constitution, must yield.”

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