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The United States Supreme Court struck down a federal law from 1992 that banned sports gambling so we can expect legalized sports betting in dozen of states to go live in immediate future.
The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 on Monday and voided the federal Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act to uphold the legality of a 2014 New Jersey law that permits sports betting at casinos and racetracks in the state.
Federal government and some sports organizations fought to uphold the current ban but they were defeated. We can expect many states to legalize sports betting in the following weeks and therefore break up Nevada’s monopoly on practice.
So far, Nevada has been the only state with legal single-game wagering. New Jersey will be the first to join the party with Mississippi, New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia to follow soon. Thirty-two states would likely offer sports betting within the five-year-period.
New Jersey spent years and millions of dollars in legal fees, trying to legalize sports betting in their casinos and racetracks and even passed a law in 2102 directly challenging the 1992 federal law.
The four major professional sports leagues, NFL, NBA, NHL and Major league Baseball, and the NCAA sued and the state lost in court. In 2014, they changed tactics by repealing laws prohibiting sports gambling and still with no success, they took the case to the Supreme Court which proved to be the right decision. Constitution allows Congress to pass laws barring wagering on sports but Congress can’t require states to keep sports gambling prohibitions in place.
“The legalization of sports gambling requires an important policy choice, but the choice is not ours to make. Congress can regulate sports gambling directly, but if it elects not to do so, each state is free to act on its own,” explained Justice Samuel Alito who wrote in the majority opinion.
Some US states think of sports betting as a potentially important source of tax revenue and with many US casino operators offering sports wagering the latest news comes as huge encouragement for the overall gaming industry.
MGM, Caesars, Boyd Gaming and more are welcoming the decision with applause and plan to act according to it and expand sports betting business. States still have to make sports betting legal and casinos have to learn and gain experience but one thing is certain, they are on the right track.