Sports betting and gambling may soon be legal outside of Las Vegas perhaps by next year in states like New Jersey from all indications. NBA commissioner Adam Silver to former MLB commish Fay Vincent are making statements indicating they are betting on this sea of change happening in the near future even though an ongoing lawsuit by the leagues, NCAA and the United States Justice Department says otherwise. I believe the rapid advancement of technology such as the internet, apps, kiosks, and tracking, means the issues that plagued the idea of legalized bets on football, baseball and basketball, hockey, fighting and racing, and even new sports such as Esports and Ultimate Frisbee, are obsolete. The Sports Techie community blog is a believer in this next-generation movement because by regulating the act of wagering on sports, it helps lesson the role of mafia type corruption affecting the outcomes of games and matches while at the same time increasing taxes collected by federal, state and local governments that can used for the public good such as these spending tax dollars on health care, education and infrastructure.
States or Federal Sports Gambling Acts?
At this moment, various states including Michigan, New York and South Carolina, have introduced legislation creating different types of sports betting models. If enacted, these new laws would help to serve as a catalyst towards breaking up the status quo in existence of Vegas ruling the sport gambling empire in the U.S. simultaneously, our federal government is teaming up the professional leagues and NCAA to stop this state backed push towards legalized sports betting.
Leading the way is New Jersey where Governor Chris Christie has pushed for a state law allowing casinos and racetracks to take on betting on sports. Those wagers would then be subject to New Jersey taxes.
According to Sports Illustrated writer, attorney and my Facebook friend, Michaal McCaan, the federal Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) is being argued by the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and NCAA in a lawsuit stating Christie’s bill is incompatible with the existing Act.
PASPA stops 46 states from licensing, sponsoring or authorizing sports betting, says McCaan, although it is not applicable to Nevada, Delaware, Oregon and Montana because in 1991 they were already accepting sports betting. Once the Justice Department jumped in on the lawsuit, it became a matter of time before the Supreme Court would ultimately be called on to clarify the standing of new and old sports wager laws across America.
The Supreme Court is now being asked whether the federal movement should be able to prohibit or even restrict states from legalized sports betting.
McCann states, “The core legal question in Christie v. NCAA is whether PASPA violates the doctrine of “anti-commandeering” as embodied by the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.” In other words, Congress has been given limitations on how they deal with state enacted regulations barring them from ordering states to use regulatory matters because the federal government has no prior structure setup by the House.
In question is New Jersey being told to assert PASPA as “commandeers” therefore prohibiting sports gambling as a state law. The sovereignty of each state to pass laws about sports wagering is central to this case as Nevada already does so. Does PASPA violate the -“equal sovereignty doctrine” enabling states to qualify for equal treatment from the federal government? U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, says McCann, has championed the cause of the federal government ruling on states equally.
Will this break the hold Nevada has and cause a chain reaction ultimately dismissing the lawsuit and affording states the right to pass their own laws regarding gambling?
So far, the lawsuit has held up in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey followed by the victory decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The Supreme Court taking on this case is reason for optimism for states in this case because McCaan states, “at least four of the nine justices must vote to grant certiorari in order for it to be granted. Therefore, at least four justices believe that New Jersey’s case warrants a closer look.”
Sports Techie, daily fantasy sports has taken hold as an alternative to sports wagering in many states including Georgia but not Washington state. Esports is growing so fast, gambling on this emerging sport has become both a nationwide and International trend.
American’s currently wager on sports outside Vegas illegally via tech enabled means such as the web, offshore sports books like “Netbet Sports” and local bookies alike, in addition to credit card businesses.
The bigger picture for the leagues is they stand to profit from changes in the laws and industry via profit sharing.
From Bleacher Report, “I don’t know how the feds or the states are going to act, but the money will come to the leagues one way or another,” Vincent said. “It will go to the teams. The unions are going to want a cut of it. The amount of money is going to mean enormous increases in players’ compensation, and officials, too; I mean the entire sporting world is going to benefit enormously.”
The fact is, Las Vegas has always been taboo for the leagues and today, the NHL and NFL has teams in sin city, and down the road, the NBA, MLB and NCAA will most certainty be there too alomng with the MLS and soccer.
Is this not like having a cake and eating it too?
Bet on the Supreme Court to see the leagues hypocrisy and feds favoritism in place then decide it is legal for each state to decide if sports betting is legal or not.
See ya later sports techie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!
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