New Jersey could challenge the federal ban on sports betting by arguing their rights under the U.S. Constitution. PolitickerNJ are speculating that those working hard to enact sports betting in the state could challenge the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in relation to state rights under the Tenth and Eleventh Amendments. The state are expected to argue the wording, which states that federal government is limited only to powers granted in the Constitution, doesn’t apply to the case of sports betting.
Back in 2009 Senator Raymond Lesniak, one of those at the forefront of efforts to allow sports betting in the state, went with the same argument as this. It was dismissed, then, because no sports-betting program had yet been approved. Now with the sports betting program behind it, there is a lot more chance that a challenge to the federal law could well be successful.
The current impasse comes as New Jersey’s polticians prepare to fight not only the federal government over the sports betting but also the professional and amateur sports leagues – and yes, in the pro case, that means all of ‘em. Governor Chris Christie is another that is for the sports betting laws to be liberalized and he doesn’t beat around the bush when it comes to the legal argument that sports betting would harm leagues.
“And it doesn’t acknowledge that there is illegal sports gambling going on in every state in America, as we speak. So why is this more injurious than illegal sports gambling to the operations of the league or the NCAA?” he said.
Professor I. Nelson Rose has already questioned whether this approach will work with politicians but with a constitutional challenge coming through it seems this might work this time. Still quite a way to go yet though.