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Supreme Court slams door on New Jersey gambling law

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The NFL strongly opposes gambling.  Except when the gambling is in the form of fantasy football, which the league doesn’t consider to be gambling even though, you know, it is.

New Jersey wanted to institute legalized gambling on football, passing a law that the NFL and other sports leagues quickly fought in court.  The NFL won (as it often seems to do in court) at the federal appellate level, forcing New Jersey to take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Before getting the Supreme Court to rule on a given case, the Supreme Court must be persuaded to review the case.  And most of the cases presented to the Supreme Court are never reviewed.

And even though the folks in New Jersey found hope in the decision of one of the three appeals court judges to vote in the state’s favor, at least five members of the U.S. Supreme Court voted to leave it alone.  As pointed out by our Mike Wilkening on Twitter, the Supreme Court has declined to review the New Jersey sports betting case.

It means that the legal odyssey has ended, adding yet another notch in the NFL’s considerable legal belt.  So if you’re in New Jersey and you’re interested in gambling on football, you’ll have to continue to call your bookie.  Or you can play fantasy football — in a league set up through the NFL’s website.

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57 Responses to “Supreme Court slams door on New Jersey gambling law”
  1. thepftpoet says: Jun 23, 2014 10:59 AM

    I just put $1,500 on the Minnesota Vikings winning the Super Bowl this year with 50-1 odds.

    I look forward to receiving my $75,000 check in February.

    #Skol

  2. 700levelvet says: Jun 23, 2014 11:03 AM

    Forget about it…

  3. jjb0811 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:05 AM

    Its as dumb as the war on drugs. ‘It’s illegal, It’ll turn a mind into mush!’. Yet everyone seems to find a way to throw down a few bucks on a game or their team.

  4. logicalvoicescowboybrother says: Jun 23, 2014 11:10 AM

    thepftpoet says: Jun 23, 2014 10:59 AM

    I just put $1,500 on the Minnesota Vikings winning the Super Bowl this year with 50-1 odds.

    I look forward to receiving my $75,000 check in February.

    #Skol

    ————————————————————-

    1) There is no way Vikings are getting out of that division

    2) How many Super Bowls have they won so far?

    3) I could have got 66/1 for that little team ~ but I like my money !!!!!!

  5. jimmyt says: Jun 23, 2014 11:13 AM

    The Supreme Court rules on Constitutional issues. I don’t believe there is a law banning gambling covered by the Constitution (could be wrong) so it should be up to the States according to the Tenth Amendment. I don’t know if that is how the state of NJ presented it or not but I do know I lot of people in positions that should have a grasp of the Constitution don’t.

  6. doctorrustbelt says: Jun 23, 2014 11:14 AM

    Gambling corporations are people.

  7. psly2124 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:15 AM

    Talk about throwing money out of your window and hoping it blows back I

  8. xbam1 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:16 AM

    If the NFL opoposes gambling then why don’t they stop NFL betting in Vegas…if they are allowed to take bets on NFL games then why shouldnt NJ have that right??

  9. therealjr says: Jun 23, 2014 11:16 AM

    Just a patently unfair law allowing a couple states to do such as no other states can. Only costing the other states a few hundred billion in tax revenue. How can our Supreme Court be bothered when they have to spend all trying to understand how the Internet works?

  10. thetruthcampaign says: Jun 23, 2014 11:24 AM

    Fantasy football, by default, has NO MONEY riding on it. Leagues make their own incentives.

  11. turbolove says: Jun 23, 2014 11:24 AM

    Is it just me, or does the NFL make sure they’re the only ones to profit off football?

  12. nflfan22 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:25 AM

    Legalized gambling = apples
    Fantasy Football = oranges

  13. snakeiz says: Jun 23, 2014 11:26 AM

    NLF opposing gambling is like saying the NRA opposes guns.

  14. dtm1088 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:26 AM

    Just wait until September. NJ will be betting on Football. Monmouth park has been set up for it for Months and NJ is gonna roll the dice and do it. Very similar to how Marijuana is illegal and Colorado and Washington decided to legalize it. There will be gambling in NJ on sports, well just see how long it lasts.

  15. denverwally says: Jun 23, 2014 11:33 AM

    thepftpoet says:Jun 23, 2014 10:59 AM

    I just put $1,500 on the Minnesota Vikings winning the Super Bowl this year with 50-1 odds.

    =================================

    Ladies and Gentlemen, I would like you to meet the worst gambler in the United States.

  16. mrlaloosh says: Jun 23, 2014 11:33 AM

    Keeps the bookies in business. The ” Constitution”? Child please.
    The constitution of the state of Louisiana. specifically bans all forms of gambling. Legal,or otherwise. So the politicians in this state approved widespread “gaming”,which isn’t prohibited by the state constitution.
    Thieves always find a way to profit.

  17. flannlv says: Jun 23, 2014 11:35 AM

    The NFL doesn’t seem to mind gambling while games are played in London.

  18. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jun 23, 2014 11:36 AM

    Then if the NFL doesn’t condone gambling, then why have injury reports, and why do teams get fined for injury report omissions and errors. Only reason for injury reports are for gambling purposes. Please eliminate NFL betting in Vegas and Delaware then NFL.

    If the NFL doesn’t condone gambling, then why do replays take 10 minutes

  19. gulz84 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:37 AM

    Just go to Delaware that’s what I do.

  20. nyking1963 says: Jun 23, 2014 11:40 AM

    when the NFL complains about the point spread in the papers or when they put their foot down with their tv partners who make picks based on the spread, I’ll take them seriously.
    Unless the NFL is making money on the venture, they’re not going to allow it.

  21. mremeet says: Jun 23, 2014 11:44 AM

    It only takes four votes for the Supreme Court to grant cert; so at least six Justices felt this case was not worthy of hearing

  22. PriorKnowledge says: Jun 23, 2014 11:51 AM

    The NFL is interstate. The constitution clearly gives control of interstate commerce to the Federal Government. So if the NFL objects, there is no way NJ can legally allow gambling on NFL games. Easy-peasie.

  23. trollingforjustice says: Jun 23, 2014 11:53 AM

    That will keep Donald Trump from buying a team

  24. patriottony says: Jun 23, 2014 11:57 AM

    Whata bout the $50,000 bet manzel placed on the Browns this year when he was in vegas? Is that OK by the NFL?

  25. mancave001 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:02 PM

    thepftpoet says:
    Jun 23, 2014 10:59 AM
    I just put $1,500 on the Minnesota Vikings winning the Super Bowl this year with 50-1 odds.

    I look forward to receiving my $75,000 check in February.
    ————————————-

    Make it 1,000 to 1. Infinity to 1. They have zero chance. You’re posts a textbook study in delusion.

  26. tabdanger says: Jun 23, 2014 12:02 PM

    The majority of Fantasy Football leagues are free with no money involved.
    Even if it was comparable (Which it is not) it would be more like the stock market.

    Not like some type of gambling which NJ wants that has the stigma of getting your legs broke when you don’t pay Big Vito..
    How many people have lost their house gambling on Fantasy Football? The hyperbole is ridiculous around here

  27. edman13 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:03 PM

    So does this mean they are going to have to eliminate Sports betting in the UK before a team will move here? Good luck with that. I can bet on any sport legally here in the UK: Football (both forms including your Soccer!), NFL, NBA, MLB you name it there are daily odds and dozens of websites to place wagers. Americans think they have so much freedom.

  28. sfm073 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:04 PM

    Yup we sure are free in this country.

  29. mancave001 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:08 PM

    jimmyt says:
    Jun 23, 2014 11:13 AM
    The Supreme Court rules on Constitutional issues. I don’t believe there is a law banning gambling covered by the Constitution (could be wrong) so it should be up to the States according to the Tenth Amendment. I don’t know if that is how the state of NJ presented it or not but I do know I lot of people in positions that should have a grasp of the Constitution don’t.
    ———————-

    Does the Constitution prohibit speeding? Does it prohibit drug selling? Does it prohibit theft, or murder? Of course not. The Federal court system does not merely look at what the Federal Constitution allows. It looks at whether laws (e.g. statutes) are Constitutional. In this case, the courts agreed that Federal law prevents New Jersey from allowing NFL betting (which it clearly does). By the USSC refusing to get involved, it means the law is Constitutional by default.

    Now, you’re more than welcome to make the case that the 10th Amendment (Rights of States and of the People) makes said law unconstitutional, but you’ve got a tough road to hoe there. We have hundreds of Federal laws that would seem to violate that provision, so this is nothing new.

    With all due respect, it doesn’t sound like YOU have a grasp of the Constitution and how judicial review works. No offense.

  30. wringworm says: Jun 23, 2014 12:10 PM

    The “Shield” is just worried that all the insider info would need to be spread to others states other than NV. Besides the refs could take orders from two separate families at the same time…

  31. avr29 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:10 PM

    brownsmakemecrazy says:
    Jun 23, 2014 11:36 AM
    Then if the NFL doesn’t condone gambling, then why have injury reports, and why do teams get fined for injury report omissions and errors. Only reason for injury reports are for gambling purposes. Please eliminate NFL betting in Vegas and Delaware then NFL.

    If the NFL doesn’t condone gambling, then why do replays take 10 minutes

    ———————-
    Injury reports are more of a legal/safety concern. Players hiding injuries from teams, or teams not reporting injuries, puts the league at risk of legal repercussions from the NFLPA, such as the concussion ordeal currently going on. It’s very much for the safety of the players (and the league) to report injuries, however harmless the may seem.

    The league also doesn’t really care if you throw 20k out of the window on a bad call. What they care about is making sure that the better team wins. Gambling comes into play here where a reputation is made. The Ravens-Niners Super Bowl had people thinking the game was fixed. The Fail Mary play cost some people (remember that people will lose money no matter what) some money. Those 2 instances are where gambling turns a non-gambling issue into an image problem for the league. Betting also allows for “game fixing”, like the Steelers-Seahawks Super Bowl was thought to possibly be fixed due to some of the awful calls made that day (Holmgren saying he didn’t think would have to play against the refs too, Tim Donaghy in the NBA).

  32. blackbug99 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:10 PM

    LOL, if the NFL is against gambling, then why make injury reports mandatory?

  33. 12strikes2 says: Jun 23, 2014 12:18 PM

    Dear S.C.O.T.U.S..

    Good Call!

    Signed,
    Anthony Soprano.

  34. lukedunphysscienceproject says: Jun 23, 2014 12:22 PM

    The league also doesn’t really care if you throw 20k out of the window on a bad call. What they care about is making sure that the better team wins. Gambling comes into play here where a reputation is made. The Ravens-Niners Super Bowl had people thinking the game was fixed. The Fail Mary play cost some people (remember that people will lose money no matter what) some money. Those 2 instances are where gambling turns a non-gambling issue into an image problem for the league. Betting also allows for “game fixing”, like the Steelers-Seahawks Super Bowl was thought to possibly be fixed due to some of the awful calls made that day (Holmgren saying he didn’t think would have to play against the refs too, Tim Donaghy in the NBA).

    You do realize that someone is more likely to throw a game if they are in debt to a bookie and fear for their life than if they put a bet down where they had to put the money up up front in a sports book? Which, you know, has cameras and paper trails and all sorts of things that would discourage a player or ref from making a bet and then throwing a game.

  35. armoderate says: Jun 23, 2014 12:50 PM

    A sad day for Organized Crime.

  36. tedmurph says: Jun 23, 2014 1:03 PM

    The law doesn’t violate the 10th amendment. One of the Enumerated Powers granted to congress is the Commerce Clause, which allows congress to pass Federal laws regulating commerce among states.

  37. lukedunphysscienceproject says: Jun 23, 2014 1:06 PM

    A sad day for Organized Crime.

    Ummm, what? This is the greatest thing that could have happened for organized crime. Who do you think controls illegal gambling?

  38. criticaldsj says: Jun 23, 2014 1:11 PM

    if you’re in New Jersey and you’re interested in gambling on football, you’ll have to continue to call your bookie.

    Or you can drive to Delaware, where it’s legal.

  39. fantasticmrhandsome says: Jun 23, 2014 1:18 PM

    Apparently, few PFT readers realize that Vegas sportsbooks were the ones who blew the whistle on Tim Donaghy. Sports betting is a multi billion dollar industry, fixing games or any other type of impropriety is bad for business.

  40. andyreidsgut says: Jun 23, 2014 1:40 PM

    I thought Delaware got shut down just as quickly (as NJ)…no?

  41. jacobjakejack says: Jun 23, 2014 1:55 PM

    Just go to Vegas…….problem solved

  42. notthetroll says: Jun 23, 2014 1:55 PM

    This prohibition on gambling is about as effective as the war on drugs. People just don’t get shot over turf as often. Good luck on gun prohibition, too, for that matter.

  43. jimmyt says: Jun 23, 2014 2:00 PM

    If there is a federal law bannig gambling it sure isn’t applied fairly. I guess I live in a much freer state than NJ.

  44. cometkazie says: Jun 23, 2014 2:02 PM

    Maybe the NFL is right?

    Think about it.

  45. icup89 says: Jun 23, 2014 2:19 PM

    Lets think about this logically. Why would the NFL not want gambling?

    1- Best TV viewers are gamblers as they have more reason to continue to have the TV on with bets on Overs/unders Point spreads….Sounds like the NFL would like that..TV’s tuned in = Money

    2- The whole “integrity of the game” baloney is ridiculous. Its 2014 Vegas people can easily hop on planes and cell phones exist. Beyond that people are just betting with bookies or on overseas websites, so all that would be happening is those people would be betting with someone legal.

    So the problem actually is their is a corrupt relationship between the NFL and Vegas which they don’t want to have to open up to other states as the more people involved the more chance it finally gets exposed. That is the only logical reason the NFL could possibly not want more people legally gambling on their games.

  46. nj22 says: Jun 23, 2014 3:20 PM

    Just shows how the NFL is in bed with the mob, who will never let sports booking be legal in Jersey! It would take 99% of their income away.

  47. silverhornet says: Jun 23, 2014 3:23 PM

    People that bet on the NFL… very hard to make money… now, online poker on the other hand, before the feds blew it up here in the US? That was a profitable situation if you were somewhat skilled at the game. BRING BACK ONLINE POKER FOR ALL OF THE US!!

  48. PriorKnowledge says: Jun 23, 2014 3:24 PM

    Re: the mandatory injury rules and how that affects gambling: It is the HIDDEN injuries that affect the insider gambling problems. By making all injuries open and public, no one has insider information to make odds on bets. For example, say Peyton Manning injured his throwing arm before the next Super Bowl and can’t play. The coach keeps it secret for tactical reasons, but some gamblers find out. They could make sure-thing bets. Soon the NFL is accused of hiding information to allow their friends to make sure-thing bets and the integrity of NFL games are in jeopardy.

  49. lukedunphysscienceproject says: Jun 23, 2014 3:28 PM

    Not like some type of gambling which NJ wants that has the stigma of getting your legs broke when you don’t pay Big Vito..

    Umm……yeah. Illegal gambling is the reason people get their legs broken by Vito, because bookies let you bet money you don’t have whereas at legal sports books, you have to put your money down when you place your bet.

  50. pacodawg says: Jun 23, 2014 4:36 PM

    Load up on the browns!

  51. armoderate says: Jun 23, 2014 5:06 PM

    Who do you think would own LEGAL gambling establishments? Yes, the mob would have to pay a little taxes, but no one would have to ask around for a bookie. You could Google them. It would be a boon. Old ladies who don’t even know the teams’ colors would be placing a $20 on Miami because they’d like to retire there.

  52. khuxford says: Jun 23, 2014 7:13 PM

    I’m sure someone else said this, but the legislators who made the push for legal sports gambling in NJ had already indicated long before the SCOTUS passed up their case that such an event wouldn’t be the end.

    They have establishments ready to go with the state deregulating gambling to clear the way for sportsbooks, with the state backing up those businesses against the federal government, should they come a-calling.

  53. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jun 23, 2014 7:26 PM

    Easiest bet in Vegas take the under 6 season win total for the Browns. They will lucky to win 2

  54. cunninghampeetemcnabbvick says: Jun 23, 2014 7:49 PM

    In Canada you can place a bet at the corner store or gas station. Its run by the government and makes a fortune.

  55. icup89 says: Jun 23, 2014 8:48 PM

    For anyone typing “Go to Delaware” you can not place straight bets there. Its moronic parlay cards

  56. steelerfan9598 says: Jun 23, 2014 9:49 PM

    Fantasy football is just like betting on games. Other than the fact that you change your bet (lineup) every week and the ‘game’ takes 4 months.

  57. jfk69 says: Jun 24, 2014 8:10 AM

    For the guy who bet 1,500 on the Vikings to win the Super Bowl at 50 to 1 odds. Please. If you have a spare thousand lying around. I will take it and give you 100 to 1 odds.
    CALL ME

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