Saturday November 1,2014 : NEW JERSEY SENATOR CALLS OUT JUDGE SHIPP
Lesniak suggests there is a conflict of interest in state's sports betting case.
The ever-combative New Jersey state senator, Ray Lesniak has called on federal judge Michael Shipp to step down from hearing litigation between New Jersey and the national sports leagues on intrastate sports betting
Judge Shipp has repeatedly ruled against the state in its legal actions to overturn the restrictive Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act and introduce sports betting to the state of New Jersey.
Calling on Judge Shipp to recuse himself Friday, Senator Lesniak said there was a "…strong appearance of a conflict of interest” because the judge's brother has had connections to the National Football League.
In a public statement the Senator said that Judge Shipp's ability to decide the case fairly is compromised because his brother Marcel, now a college assistant coach, played in the National Football League and has participated in a program for minorities looking to coach in the league.
However, Dennis Drazin, a spokesman for would-be sports betting operator Monmouth Park disagreed with the Senator and told the publication NJ.com that he thought the conflict allegations were a "non-issue".
“I don’t think a judge would place a job for his brother in front of his own integrity,” Drazin said.
No other political or judicial comments have surfaced so far.