New Jersey Governor Behind Intrastate Online Gambling Bill
By Austin Munro, Rakeback.com Poker News Staff Writer
Some of you may remember when New Jersey’s legislature passed pro-online gambling bills by a large margin last year. In fact, they passed with votes of 32-4 in the State Senate and 63-11 in the State Assembly.
However, Governor Chris Christie vetoed the bill because of “legal and constitutional concerns.” Governor Christie believed that the state’s constitution (which prohibits gambling outside of Atlantic City) would be violated by playing online poker outside of Atlantic City.
A year later and after the Justice Department has reinterpreted the Wire Act of 1961, Governor Christie is finally onboard with allowing New Jersey residents to participate in gambling online. Governor Christie says “New Jersey should be in that business” and is now awaiting clarification from his peers on whether state citizens will have to vote on the measure in November prior to signing a bill.
There is some controversy amongst proponents of the bill as to whether or not it can even pass in a statewide vote. While there are no reliable polls on citizen’s opinions of the bill, it seems that proponents think it is around 50-50. One thing is certain – if citizens of New Jersey are required to vote on this bill in November, then the earliest we will see Atlantic City casinos offering intrastate online gambling would be in 2013.