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7 ways New Jersey legislators paved the way for other gambling states

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It is paradoxical for the entertainment so ingrained in the American culture and widespread in the media to be as dismissed and banned as was gambling. While some states had rules grandfathered into the union, it was up to New Jersey legislators to pave the way for other gambling states.

The road was not easy in the slightest because severe corruption scandals that are now more than a century old have left bad memories in the mind of the legal system. Even when most people forgot about them they stayed in place, probably doing more harm than good.

There are three reasons how the will of both the NJ residents and administration pushed open the doors for other states to legalize and regulate gambling and a form of entertainment, both physically and digitally:

  1. Reinforced state’s rights
  2. Introduced good checks and balances
  3. Showed that benefits outweigh the downsides

When talking about gambling, same as with any form of gaming that causes addiction, we need to calculate the downsides. There will always be people who value the thrill too much and will become addicted and they should be helped and stopped before it is too late.

But, if predatory practices are stopped in time, there is no problem for the rest in enjoying their time, regardless if it is in a casino, at a sports bar, or on their phones.

#1 Shown that globalization is imminent

The train has already left the station and there is now no way to stop it. With the global internet reach now passing 4.6 billion people, or 59% of the population, there is no way to keep something just in one country or a single state.

And that came as a comparative advantage to the developed countries and regions that were steadily in decline because of the increasing population and diminishing productivity.

For instance, if you want to play New Jersey free slots like those on, you don’t actually need to be anywhere near Atlantic City, or the Atlantic Ocean for that matter. You can play the game from Japan if that is what you are after.

This made other states realize that it is impossible to ban something each one of their citizens can access instantly online if it is available in another state.

#2 Enforced state’s rights

New Jersey really fought tooth and nail for gambling to become legal in the state, opening the first casinos back in 1977 and even pushing to allow sports betting which was disallowed for a very long time.

But, with multiple lawsuits, appeals, and legal battles, they were able to show that each state of the Union has the right to ban or allow things inside it as it sees fit.

#3 Saved tax revenue

New Jersey cashed in more than $300M in 2020 just from online gambling, saving the year when it comes to tax revenue. Because of their decision to allow online gambling for their residents and foreigners of legal age they were able to survive a terrible year relatively easily.

Other states are noticing this, and while it might not be the best idea to focus one’s industry on gambling, it is a great way to diversify income.

#4 Pushed the fantasy sports argument

Daily Fantasy Sports, or DFS, is becoming increasingly popular across the United States, and unlike sports betting it is rarely as regulated. But, while DFS is not exactly betting on the result of the sports match, it is betting on the results of individual players.

One of the core arguments for allowing sports betting was that there were few downsides to DFS and there shouldn’t be any with sports betting if regulated correctly, which is showing to be true.

#5 Used the rise in iGaming

New Jersey might have been behind Nevada when it comes to legalizing casinos, but they are a pioneer when it comes to iGaming. As an early adopter, they used the stellar rise in the online gambling industry for both tax revenue, jobs, and local entertainment.

And, with the practices against predatory behavior already existing with licenses from Malta and Curacao, the negative aspects of online gambling were driven down to a minimum.

#6 Spearheaded nationwide changes

It is easy to fear what you don’t know. Unlike New Jersey residents that have lived alongside gambling for ages, other parts of the nation were afraid of the negative impacts such behavior might have on both the state and the community.

During the 20th century, casinos were often a place for organized crime to launder money and invest criminal gains. But, with NJ spearheading online gambling specifically, they have shown that such fears are mostly misplaced.

#7 Prevented future issues with terrestrial gambling

New Jersey already had a history with gambling and knew how to handle many of the issues. And, with their push for iGaming and sports betting they were able to solve many of the issues with might befall terrestrial establishments.

Especially in the times of crisis, such as the 2020 pandemic, it is a good idea to have a backup solution for both the people working in the industry and the state that relies on the taxes.

Story by Phil Vamius

augusta free press
augusta free press