Supreme Court Agrees to Hear New Jersey Gambling/Federalism Case: CEI Statement

Today, the Supreme Court agreed to hear a lawsuit involving New Jersey’s challenge to a federal prohibition on the state’s ability to repeal its own sports gambling ban. Back in November 2016, CEI joined the Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) and the Cato Institute in an amicus brief supporting New Jersey’s case.

CEI fellow Michelle Minton, a longtime proponent of letting states decide on legalization, offered the following statement on today’s news.

“It is encouraging that the Supreme Court will hear this case challenging the federal government’s ill-founded efforts to co-opt state laws,” said Minton. “The citizens of each state should be protected from federal attempts to ride roughshod over state decision making, which is what America’s system of federalism is all about—protecting states and individuals against federal overreach. When it comes to the question of permitting gambling, the New Jersey legislature was within its rights to repeal its own laws expressly outlawing gambling. Though regardless of what the court ultimately decides, Congress should also take action to repeal the federal law that bans gambling in nearly every state.”

CEI general counsel Sam Kazman added, “The Court’s announcement is great news for states’ rights, for individual rights, and most importantly for sport fans.”