Why We Can Now Bet on Sports | Murphy v. NCAA

Why We Can Now Bet on Sports | Murphy v. NCAA


Mr. Beat presents Supreme Court Briefs New Jersey
November 8, 2011 Citizens vote to make betting on sports legal. This was a big deal. At the time, 97% of all sports bets placed in the country were illegal. The New Jersey state legislature then passed and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law the Sports Wagering Act of 2012, which let citizens place sports bets at casinos and racetracks. Well the NCAA, NBA, NFL, NHL, and MLB were like “nuh-uhh.” They sued Governor Christie, arguing that New Jersey legalizing sports betting went against the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, aka PASPA, passed by Congress back in 1992. This law banned betting on sports except for a few special places that were exempt. Well apparently New Jersey was not special enough. Governor Christie was like “Yeah, I KNOW New Jersey legalizing sports betting went against PAPSA, but the Tenth Amendment is on our side.” You see, the Supreme Court had previously established this thing called the Anti-Commandeering Doctrine in two cases, New York v. United States (1992) and Printz v. United States (1997). The doctrine basically said the federal government can’t force states or state officials to adopt or enforce federal laws. Soon the U.S. Department of Justice joined forces with the sports leagues, and when they went to U.S. District Court in February 2013, their main argument was that sports gambling not only hurt their leagues, but hurt the integrity of the sports. The judge agreed and ruled with the sports leagues and Justice Department. Governor Christie and New Jersey appealed to the Third Circuit Appeals Court, but they upheld the ruling. After the Supreme Court refused to hear another appeal in the spring of 2014, the New Jersey legislature went back to the drawing board. Since the Sports Wagering Act was unconstitutional, they just went back and repealed parts of existing New Jersey laws from 1977 that had banned sports gambling. Oh snap. What a sneaky way to legalize sports gambling. But Governor Christie was like “sorry, not sorry” and vetoed the repeals, saying “guys, we just can’t bypass the Third Circuit’s ruling.” However, just a few months later, Christie changed his mind and signed it into law. Welp, the five sports leagues sued New Jersey again in November 2014. Yet again, the District Court and Third Circuit ruled in favor of the sports leagues. But Christie and New Jersey begged the Supreme Court to consider an appeal again, specifically bringing up the question “Does a federal statute that prohibits modification or repeal of state-law prohibitions on private conduct impermissibly commandeer the regulatory power of States?” and they cited good ol’ New York v. United States as precedent. Well that got the Court’s attention this time. They agreed to hear the case on June 27, 2017. The Court heard oral arguments on December 7, 2017. By this time, New Jersey had elected a new governor, Phil Murphy. One big thing the Court looked at was whether or not the Commerce Clause gave the federal government authority to say a state couldn’t repeal old laws. On May 14, 2018, the Court finally announced their decision. They sided with New Jersey. It was 7-2, although Justice Stephen Breyer only partially sided with the majority. The Court ruled that PASPA went against the Anti-Commandeering Doctrine because it specifically said what a state could and could not do. A month later, New Jersey made sports gambling legal again. Other states soon followed. Today, just 16 months after the decision, Atlantic City appears to be on the rebound. For years before the decision, its economy had struggled. Now that sports betting is legal, business is booming once again there. Murphy v. NCAA was a win for states’ rights and the 10th Amendment. It strengthened the Anti-Commandeering Doctrine, and ever since states have been a bit more bold passing and upholding laws that went against federal laws. A great example is marijuana policy. The decision has made it clear that the federal government can’t prevent states from legalizing marijuana. Sure, there’d still be ways the federal government could regulate it and prevent its legalization indirectly, but for the most part it looks like states are going to keep doing their own thing and it’ll be harder can stop them. Now, that all said. What IS gambling really? I mean, just about all of us agree betting on sports is gambling, but what about loot boxes? Shouldn’t buying THEM be considered gambling? Well, to answer that question, Mr. Sinn has made a video. That’s right, this video is a collaboration with Mr. Sinn, a fellow social studies teacher/YouTuber based out of Minnesota who is a fantastic educator. Be sure to check out his video and subscribe to him while you’re over there. I’ll see you for the next Supreme Court case, jury! Thanks to Mr. Sinn for collaborating with me. What do YOU think about Murphy v. NCAA? Do you agree with the Court’s decision? Should ALL gambling be legal? Let me know in the comments below. I think I’m going to bet my life savings that the Chiefs will win the Super Bowl this year. I probably should run this by Mrs. Beat first but We’ll see. Thanks for watchiiiiiiinnnnnngggggggggg

74 Replies to “Why We Can Now Bet on Sports | Murphy v. NCAA”

  1. The anti-commandeering doctrine sounds like a really stupid thing. So the laws apply to the country, but you cannot make certain they will be enforced? Sounds ridiculous.

  2. Hi Mr Beat. Thankyou for putting out good concise summaries of important SCOTUS decisions. Although I am not an American, I follow US politics and dabble in a bit of reading about US Constitutional law. My current favourite justice on the Supreme Court bench is Neil Gorsuch. I was wondering who is your favourite judge currently sitting on the Supreme Court bench and why ?

  3. its nice to see more states being able to do more things , my states has been doing pull tabs for decades and legalized cannabis a few years ago, now taco bell sales are up too .

    as a Dolphins fan i am not betting on the dolphins to win the superbowl this year O_O

  4. I agree with Christie here (never thought I’d say that) and I like the states legalizing marijuana but the anti-commandeering doctrine sounds terrible in some cases. Imagine if Eisenhower got sued b/c of his enforcement of Brown v. Board of Education or states could just ignore the civil rights act. You could think of thousands of laws that could be a disaster if the states were allowed to ignore.

  5. This "anti-comandeering doctrine" would be the most laughable argument you'd probably be able to try to present to a court in Brazil. The Union can do absolutely anything without the states approval, even passing constitutional ammendments stripping states from their powers.

  6. Supposedly Congress is going to revisit this and regulate it in a slightly less illegal way, but it’s Congress so I wouldn’t hold my breath

  7. Awesome video Mr Beat. I live in Washington I believe state gambling is illegal here but there are still lots of casinos on the Native reservations here.

  8. No, gambling on college sports has been proven time and again to hurt the inegrity of our institutions of higher learning. The NCAA and various other institutions have worked tirelessly for decades trying to prevent undue influence in the form for monetary and other monetizing (is that a word?) awards for exceptional, or deceptively poor performance on the field of play. While professional sports should not be immune from market pressures, making gambling legal on college sports is an entirely different thing from all other types of betting and should be illegal.

  9. I think I agree on the court with this one. I think the sports leagues don't have the authority to sue a state over gambling. They're two separate business.

  10. Are you allowed to bet on the outcome of Supreme Court cases? USA versus Gun Nuts Inc 100 to 1. Womens' Right To Choose v. Any Backward State 500 to 1.

  11. Great video Mr Beat. However I want to see the Curt Flood Case which opened the door for MLB free agency back in the 1960s & 70s. Would love to see more sports related cases. Have a nice weekend.

  12. Betting your life savings on the chiefs is a good idea. But if you are actually serious about it, you’d sell the house and make it a real bet.

  13. Thank you again Mr. Beat for collaborating with me. I am curious… When the Chiefs win the super bowl and you double your life earnings. What will you do with the money?

  14. Without a doubt the right decision. You cant tell me that each state has to follow the same laws. The cultures and economies can be polar at times. I mean, do you really think laws in California are going to do well in a state like Mississippi? Hardly, if any, will. The freedom can allow any state to move forward with what they want to do without having to be held back and help better directly help it's own people.

  15. Sure, sure it's a full moon on Friday the 13th which has been something like 20 years since the last one, but today is also the 50th anniversary of Scooby Doo so if Slenderman comes creeping up on you while you're checking out the full moon; could be old man Wilkerson.

  16. Betting will hurt the integrity of the sports? lmao do those leagues know that people bet on all of those things in the UK? Especially NFL

  17. Hey Mr. Beat! you were my 7th grade history teacher at ABMS! my names JJ Cooper so i’m not sure if you will remember me because it’s been forever! i’m a senior this year 😟

  18. how do us laws when it comes to internet?

    is it a question of where the server stands or where the customer lives?

    so if a customer who lives in a state where it is not legal to gamble uses a server that is in a place where it is legal, would this be legal or illegal?

  19. You should definitely do a Supreme Court Briefs episode on the Janus v. AFSCME case from 2018. It really changed a whole lot about what unions could do regarding membership fees.

  20. Loot boxes is a worse form of gambling imo as the target market sometimes isn't just adults. But adults should be allowed to democratically choose if they want certain types of gambling in their state. In my state in Australia you can gamble longer hours (4am cut off) than drink (3am cut off).

  21. As a resident of New Jersey, I am very pleased with the work of both Gov. Christie, and Gov. Murphy regarding this subject in fighting the lawsuit, as well as the courts final ruling. Atlantic City needs a rebound, and this can certainly help it get back to where it once was.

  22. As an Englishman I'm amazed the US (or the individual States) don't legalise it and tax it. The British Govt. makes a fortune from its gambling taxes. You can bet on anything within reason in the UK (the bookies' odds on general elections are usually more reliable than the polls) either on the course or in a bookies shop.

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