Judge Pauses New Jersey Sports Betting
Well, that was quick.
For the past three weeks, we’ve been discussing how New Jersey is looking to expand online gambling by allowing for sports betting. These sites would be set up, sites would have welcome bonuses or no deposit bonuses to drive customers in, and everyone would be happy. Chris Christie even signed off on the bill! Everything came to a screeching halt this past week, though, when a federal judge granted a request made by the NHL, MLB, NFL, NBA, and NCAA to halt legalized sports betting in New Jersey.
The only way that the leagues could’ve submitted a request to halt legalized sports betting in New Jersey is if they were able to successfully show that they would be irreparably harmed if the state’s casinos (land and online) were permitted to allow sports betting. Apparently, they were able to do so.
This comes exactly one week after Chris Christie signed a law that repealed New Jersey’s ban on sports wagering. It was expected that the major sports leagues would file a request to put a hold on it, but it was unknown whether that request would actually be granted.
Michael Drewniak, a spokesman for Governor Chris Christie, said “this is a temporary restraining order while the core issues surrounding sports wagering in New Jersey are fully considered by the court. We have to continue to have full confidence in the strength and appropriateness of our position as we move forward in the litigation.”
This is the latest in a series of missteps on the quest to legalize online gambling and sports betting. New Jersey has been a trailblazer in the effort to legalize online gambling, and if sports betting takes off in the state, other states are expected to look into legalizing it.
As you can imagine, Governor Chris Christie wants to push the issue through quickly. In 2012, roughly $3.5 billion was wagered on sports alone. Legalized online sports betting could be a huge, much needed draw for the state of New Jersey.
Monmouth Park, the racetrack that was preparing to take the state’s first legalized sports bets, has put its plans on hold. There’s no way to tell when the issue will clear all of the legal hurdles it faces.
Meanwhile, land based casinos in New Jersey continue to experience losses in revenue. Online gambling makes up for that lost revenue. Sports betting would give New Jersey’s economy a much needed boost, but until everything is approved, that won’t be happening.
Some choose to remain hopeful that it’ll be legalized shortly, like Dennis Drazin, a legal consultant for Monmouth Park. “While we are disappointed not to be able to start this Sunday, we are confident that sports betting will be coming to New Jersey In the very near future,” he said. Hopefully he’s right.