NFL Seeks Injunction to Bar Sports Betting Movement

Posted on October 20, 2014

On Friday, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed a bill to repeal an existing NJ sports betting law and replace it with a new version. State lawmakers argue that the new law meets the criteria established by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. However, at least one sports leagues has protested the new law and has vowed to have it overturned. The NFL intends to challenge the law and recently filed a brief for an upcoming injunction to bar Monmouth Park from offering sports betting services.

State Sen. Raymond Lesniak tweeted that the injunction will take place on Tuesday at 3:30 PM EST. The brief specifies the arguments that lawmakers need to expect. The league claims that the new law violates the state constitution, which bars any form of gambling that hasn’t been expressly legalized and regulated by the State Legislature. This wording would be a Catch-22 for the state if the courts agree, because the federal court ruling states that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act prohibits the regulation of sports betting.

Monmouth Park recently indicated that it intends to offer sports betting early next week. The NFL argues that the entity should be barred from doing so until the court issues a ruling on the lawsuit.

The lawsuit and injunction briefs also claim that the new law continues to violate the PASPA. Governor Christie and other state lawmakers disagree, but a federal judge will need to decide. Christie had reservations over the constitutionality of a previous draft of the law, but is confident that the recently signed law complies with the state constitution. The bill was passed by a margin of 73-4, which clearly shows that state lawmakers strongly support the legalization of sports betting.

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