U.S. high court won’t hear appeal, but N.J. lawmaker still bets on sports wagering

The U.S. Supreme Court is allowing a ban on sports betting in New Jersey to remain in place.

But the lawmaker who’s been pushing for sports wagering is not deterred by the court’s rebuffing an attempt to bring betting on professional and college sporting events to Atlantic City casinos and the state’s racetracks.

Senator Ray Lesniak said Monday the federal Department of Justice has provided guidelines that would allow New Jersey to let its casinos and racetracks accept sports bets, and he’s introduced legislation to repeal all of the state’s laws prohibiting it.

“It’s kind of just like Colorado and Washington has marijuana, and federal regulation bans that as well. We’re going to hold them to their words,” Lesniak said. “They went to court, and they said go right ahead and do it, be our guest.”

A 1992 federal law restricts betting on sports to four other states.

The Senate could act on Lesniak’s bill by the end of the month, according to Senate President Steve Sweeney. If the Assembly also approves it, he said the racetracks and some casinos could start taking sports bets as soon as September.

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