New Jersey Sports Betting Court Case Action Ramping Up This Spring

Action is coming on the New Jersey sports betting case, apparently as soon as this spring.

The NJ sports betting case appeal

New Jersey’s push for a US Supreme Court appeal about legalizing sports betting took a positive turn when the nation’s highest court asked for the opinion of the US Solicitor General.

In other words, SCOTUS wanted the SG to give the federal government’s thoughts on the matter. Now, that brief is closer to becoming reality.

NJ sports betting brief coming in May

ESPN reported the Solicitor General’s office will file its perspective on the matter this May. SCOTUS will take the brief into consideration when it decides if it wants to hear New Jersey’s case.

That decision, ESPN reported, should come by the end of June. The court will simply decide whether to hear the appeal or not. No appeal means the end of the road; if granted, an appeal would likely be heard sometime in the next year.

Still, this puts the timeline of New Jersey’s sports betting fate inside of 10 weeks, which is most likely a relief to Congressman Frank Pallone (D-NJ).

Pallone sees Raiders’ move to Las Vegas as a good sign

Pallone has long been an ardent supporter of legalized sports betting in New Jersey. Though the state’s attempts to gain control of sports betting regulation has failed multiple times over the past few years, he hasn’t given up hope.

In the wake of the Oakland Raiders’ recent move to Las Vegas, Pallone said he views the NFL as becoming more comfortable with the intersection between sports and gambling.

Here’s what he said in a statement the day the Raiders’ move gained approval from NFL owners:

“Today, the NFL owners almost unanimously voted to approve the Raiders organization move to Las Vegas. This move is a clear sign that the league owners’ attitudes toward sports betting has changed.  I hope that following today’s vote, I can count on the support of the NFL and the NFL team owners for my efforts to legalize and regulate sports betting.”

NFL support won’t happen in the short term

Some might consider Pallone’s view to be a little too rosy considering the NFL continues to be a plaintiff in the NJ case.

NJ has fought the federal law — PASPA — that has prevented the state from legalizing sports betting as unconstitutional. The NFL and the other major pro sports leagues in the US are behind the court case, saying legal NJ sports betting would hurt game integrity.

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals twice ruled that the New Jersey law violated PASPA. The state then filed an appeal with SCOTUS, which is now awaiting the Solicitor General’s brief.

Should the SG’s recommendation go against the state, we’re not as likely to see a Supreme Court case.