US Supreme Court Clears Path for Legalized Sports Betting Nationwide

In a 6-3 opinion, the US Supreme Court struck down a 1992 federal statute that prohibited most states from allowing sports betting. Ruling in favor of the State of New Jersey and against sports leagues including the NCAA, the Court found that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) contained provisions that violated a doctrine known as the anticommandeering rule under the 10th Amendment, meaning that the law represented an unconstitutional overreach into state sovereignty.

This ruling opens the door to sports betting and gambling operations across America, where an estimated $150 billion in illegal bets on professional and amateur sports are placed each year. It also likely has implications for other hotly disputed issues implicating 10th Amendment concerns, such as marijuana legalization, environmental regulation, and the establishment of sanctuary cities.

More Resources

Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, available at the Justia US Supreme Court Center

United States Supreme Court Oral Argument Audio, Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, December 12, 2017

Supreme Court Ruling Favors Sports Betting, The New York Times, May 14, 2018

Photo credit: / Eugene Onischenko