Assemblyman Hopes to Work With NJ Governor on New Internet Gambling Measure

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Internet Gambling New Jersey

Following New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s decision to veto a bill that would make NJ the first state to legalize Internet gambling, state democrats spoke out about the decision.

“The reality is that Internet gaming is coming and we need to figure out a way to make it work to benefit Atlantic City casinos,” said Assemblyman John Burzichelli (D-Salem). “I hope to work cooperatively on new legislation that ensures New Jersey remains competitive for years to come in all aspects of modern gaming.”

Burzichelli and some of his colleagues indicated that he had heard from the Governor about his decision shortly after noon on Thursday. 

Christie seemed to indicate that he would like the voters of New Jersey to decide on any such legislation.  He expressed "legal and constitutional" concerns at the state level without necessarily referencing federal legislation now in place banning most forms of online gambling. 

Thegovernor said the bill didn’t prevent gambling from popping up in Internet cafes, nightclubs and bars — against the public’s will to keep betting within Atlantic City limits.   Sen. Jim Whelan also noted this appeared to be Christie’s biggest concern.  "That's a manageable issue we can address in new legislation," he said.

He also objected to revenue from the bill going to support the state’s ailing horse-racing industry. Christie is trying to get the industry off state subsidies.

New Jersey would have taxed Internet betting revenue at 23 percent.

A number of other states are considering legalizing Internet gambling including California, Florida, Iowa and now Kentucky, a state whose governor had previously attempted to seize some 141 Web gambling domain names.


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