TRENTON, N.J. – the nation’s high court declined to review the federal ban on sports betting, however, the lawmaker pushing for sports wagering at the state’s racetrack and casinos was not deterred.
“We’re not going to be deterred,” declared State Sen. Ray Lesniak, D-Union who initiated the legalization of online gaming in the state of New Jersey.
The Senator told earlier he will move the bill to the Legislature should the U.S. Supreme Court decline to hear the case.
“I have legislation being drafted, and that will be introduced, to allow casinos and racetracks to have sports betting on our premises. We just won’t be able to regulate it. We pushed the envelope with internet gaming, and we will push the envelope on sports betting. And we are not going to be deterred,” Lesniak announced.
According to Lesniak, Republican Gov. Chris Christie would have to be on board with the new bill.
“We’re one step away. I would hope the governor will reconsider,” said Lesniak.
Christie, however, showed no enthusiasm with the new legislation.
“So you know, that’s the way it goes. Nothing more I can say. They said no, so we have to move on,” Christie commented.
The state has been battling for years for sports betting in order to raise millions of revenues and save the racetrack industry as well as Atlantic City.
“Monmouth Park will be ready to go in September, and I’ll be there to place the first bet,” said Lesniak.
In an attempt to foster honest sports competition, the Congress enacted the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in 1992 also known as the Bradley Act. The Act outlawed sports betting in the U.S. with the exclusion of sports lotteries in Oregon, Delaware, Montana and Nevada.
The Congress also provided a one-year window since the Act took effect, for states to pass a law that will permit sports wagering. The state of NJ failed to pass a law during that time so in January of 2012, it enacted a law to allow sports betting at casinos and racetrack.