More Pressure From NJ Reps On Congress To Discuss Sports Betting

More Pressure From NJ Reps On Congress To Discuss Sports Betting

The Letter To Congress

Representatives Donald Norcross (D-NJ 1st District) and Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ 2nd District) penned an official letter to Congress, asking the House Judiciary Committee for hearings to go over the potential implications of widespread regulation. If the Court rules in New Jersey’s favor, that means that the state would authorize sports betting immediately after.

New Jersey may be in the forefront of the battle for sports betting expansion, but other states have followed their lead by writing preemptive laws that would go into effect based on the outcome of the case. That is why the letter addressed to Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA 6th District) and ranking member Rep. John Conyers (D-MI 13th District) stresses the importance of the federal government being proactive. According to the Press of Atlantic City, the letter states the following:

“In recognition of PASPA’s failure to prevent illegal sports betting and the benefits of regulations and taxing this activity, numerous states have either enacted or advanced legislative measures to authorize sports betting in recent years.”

The letter continues on to say:

“We strongly believe the relevant committees should examine the issue prior to the court’s ruling to ensure Congress is fully informed and positioned to quickly respond to the court.”

The Issue Of Sports Betting In States

Being proactive was one of the main discussion points of the letter to Congress, and for good reason. The list of states advocating for change has grown immensely since the New Jersey sports betting case started five years ago. Here are a few of the states that are pushing for legalized sports betting:

  • California
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • New York
  • South Carolina
  • West Virginia

What Progress Has Been Made With Congress And Sports Betting

While individual states have been taking legislative action, so have Congressmen. LoBiondo introduced the Sports Gaming Opportunity Act * * back in February. The Act would allow states to legalize sports betting within a four-year window ending January 1, 2021.

Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ District 6) also introduced the New Jersey Betting and Equal Treatment Act (NJ BET Act) during the same period. The NJ BET Act would exclusively exempt New Jersey from the prohibitions put in place by PASPA. You can read more about H.R. 784 here. * *

Pallone also introduced a draft bill called the Gaming Accountability and Modernization Enhancement Act (GAME Act) that would repeal PASPA and allow each state to determine the legality of all forms of gambling within their jurisdiction. You can read full details here.

Up to this point, there have been no hearings held by Congress that had a substantial impact on the issue of sports betting. In 2015, Pallone was able to get hearings regarding daily fantasy sports and technically sports betting as well, but it resulted in no movement from representatives.

Now that sports betting expansion could be a reality in just a few short months, Congress may be more inclined to grant the hearings suggested by the reps and take action on the regulatory framework for USA online sportsbooks.