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What is PASPA

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The Professional And Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 was relatively well-known across the United States as the piece of legislature that stopped the spread of sports betting across the country.

It was June 2, 192 when PASPA passed the US Senate and it wasn’t long before the House of Representatives followed suit, doing so on October 6 in the same year. Then President George Bush signed the bill into law later that month on October 28. On the first day of 1993, the bill became law and sports betting was deemed illegal.

Four states however were Grandfathered in so sports betting to varying degrees was deemed legal in Nevada, Oregon, Delaware and Montana. Whatever was on the statute was allowed to stay but new avenues of sports betting were blocked off.

The state of New Jersey wanted a piece of the action and in 2012, the voters voted in a non-binding referendum that they wanted legalized sports gambling in the state. From then on it became a battle between the state and various courts and each time it was the state of New Jersey that came away defeated.

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NJ appealed to the Supreme Court who refused to hear the case but when they appealed for a second time in 2017, in a surprise ruling the court agreed to hear the case. Officially listed as Christie vs NCAA, it was commonly known as the New Jersey Sports Betting case. Oral arguments were heard in December 2017 and come May of 2018, the court ruled that PASPA was unconstitutional and it was repealed.

This move opened the door to legalized sports betting not only in the four Grandfathered states and New Jersey but across the United States. Many other states quickly saw bills make their way to the floor of the state Senate’s and slowly the amount of states where sports betting was made legal started to rise.

New Jersey was the first state among the 46 to make the move but states such as New York, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Indiana and West Virginia have now taken their first legal bet. Other states are in the on deck circle and by the end of 2020, up to 29 states could have legalized form of betting on sports.

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