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New Jersey Sports Betting Lawsuit Dismissed

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Mar/09/2011
New Jersey Sports Betting Lawsuit Dismissed

A lawsuit filed by State Senator Raymond Lesniak (D-Union) asking for an overturn of a federal ban on sports wagering in New Jersey, has been dismissed.

The lawsuitwould have had voters authorize sports wagering in the state had the federal ban been overturned.   Only four states in the US allow for some forms of sports betting. 

Last week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie vetoed a bill that would have permitted online gambling in the state.  Voters will also be able to decide on legalization of Web gambling come November as part of a referendum.

Lesniak said he intends to keep his effort to overturn the ban alive.

From New Jersey News Room:  “Certainly, I’m disappointed that Judge Brown failed to consider the Constitutional issues in allowing the federal ban on sports wagering to stand,” Lesniak said Tuesday. “This law essentially puts New Jersey and 45 other states at a competitive disadvantage, and allows only four states in the nation – Nevada, Oregon, Delaware and Montana – to have a monopoly on legal sports book in this country.

“However, in his decision to dismiss, he left the door open for future efforts to overturn the unconstitutional ban in the courts,” the senator said. “If voters in the Garden State approve a referendum which will be on the ballot this November to give New Jersey the authority to establish sports book at our ailing casinos and racetracks, we will essentially set up a constitutional crisis, in which the will of the people, expressed at the ballot box, will come into conflict with a flawed and ultimately unconstitutional federal law.

“I believe that when that happens, the courts will have to rule in our favor,” Lesniak said. “I will continue working with my colleagues in the Legislature to promote sports betting as a tool to help raise needed revenues for our state and our struggling gaming and wagering industries. As soon as the voters weigh in on this issue in November, we should be ready to move, and force a decision from the federal courts on the sports wagering ban on its merits and Constitutional issues, not on a technicality.”

- Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher

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