Friday June 27,2014 : NEW JERSEY LAW MAKERS REACT TO SUPREME COURT DECISION ON SPORTS BETTING
Both legislative Houses approve new Lesniak bill in record time.
Within days of the US Supreme Courts' refusal to intervene in the New Jersey appeal against lower court rulings outlawing its attempt to introduce intrastate sports betting, state politicians in both the Assembly and the Senate have overwhelmingly approved a new bill drafted by Sen. Ray Lesniak.
Lesniak's bill passed the state Senate on Thursday by a margin of 38-1 and in the Assembly by a margin of 63-6, with just two abstentions.
The new bill exploits the situation created by Department of Justice lawyers who had earlier argued against New Jersey’s plan to offer legal sports wagers by suggesting there was nothing to stop any state from simply declining to enforce its own sports betting prohibitions.
Lesniak’s bill uses this argument against its initiators by authorising the state to repeal its laws prohibiting sports betting at Atlantic City casinos and state racetracks.
The approval by the house presents Governor Chris Christie with a familiar problem – he can sign the bill into state law and almost certainly face more sports league and federal litigation, or he can – as he has done in the past with online gambling – exercise the right of veto and enter into a conflict with state lawmakers.
Christie has 45 days in which to decide whether he wants to charge back into the fray.