New Jersey has asked the United States Justice Department to confirm that online gambling is legal under federal law, an issue that officials thought was settled until the Trump agency reversed course.
The Supreme Court ruled in 2011 during Barack Obama’s presidency that the federal Wire Act did not prohibit internet gambling. After that, New Jersey was one of three states to legalize it. When the coronavirus shut down New Jersey’s casinos last year, online gambling and sports betting helped the state.
However, under Trump’s administration, the department reversed its position. It then determined in January 2019 that the federal Wire Act did, in fact, prohibit such wagering.
New Jersey and 26 other states have asked U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to reverse the Trump administration’s decision and return the agency to its original interpretation of the Wire Act. President Joe Biden nominated Garland. He became vice president when the Supreme Court issued its first opinion more than a decade ago.