Those Who Care About Federalism Should Be Interested in Sports Betting Case

The Hill covers Christie v. NCAA.

If James “Father of the Constitution” Madison were alive today, he’d have a lot to say. Free speech is under attack, unconstitutional federal agencies continue running amok, and America is 20 trillion dollars in debt. He probably wouldn’t care about my fantasy football picks — but as the author of the Tenth Amendment, he should.

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear Christie v. NCAA, a case about legalized sports betting with surprisingly far-reaching implications for Federalism and the reach of federal law. New Jersey has challenged the constitutionality of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PAPSA), a federal law prohibiting states from legalizing and regulating sports betting within their borders.

The black market poses a greater risk to the integrity of sports than open, visible, and regulated betting. The Competitive Enterprise Institute notes that “sports betting lines operate like financial markets…an extreme fluctuation, which might occur if large amounts of money was suddenly being bet on a longshot underdog, would set off alarm bells.” But blanket gambling bans mean suspicious betting patterns go unreported, making another Black Sox more likely, not less. Players are unlikely to report gambling, too, if it means facing suspension or worse. No one wants to be the next Pete Rose.

Read the full article at The Hill.