Poll Finds Large Support for Sports Betting in New Jersey
Earlier this week a poll was released which showed that 45% of New Jersey residents were in favour of sports betting being legalised at Atlantic City casinos and racetracks.
Krista Jenkins, the executive director of the PublicMind poll and professor of political science at Fairliegh Dickinson University, said that “although support is not overwhelming, these numbers suggest the public is cautiously behind the goal of moving forward with legalised sports betting,”
Last November voters approved a referendum to amend New Jersey’s constitution to allow sports betting on a range of collegiate and professional sports. The state legislature then passed a measure to allow tracks and casinos to offer sports betting.
However, since then the NCAA and the pro leagues NFL, Major League Baseball, NHL and NBA have filed a suit against the new legislation. According to the Chairman of the Gaming Practice at Blank Rome L.L.P., Stephen D. Schrier, the leagues are seeking a permanent injunction but the court has not yet entered an order. Schrier said that as there is no injunction New Jersey is able to “continue to finalise its regulations and plans for sports betting, however, it would be proceeding at its own risk, knowing the case is pending.”
It is thought that sports betting could generate an additional $200 million a year in revenue for New Jersey. State Sen. Jim Whelan has said that “the reality of sports betting is it’s going to help.” However, he does not believe it can solve all of Atlantic City’s problems.
The poll found that 53% of men and 38% of women were in favour of moving forward with sports betting even with the federal ban still in place. It found that those who have been to a casino in the past year were more likely to support the activity.