I. Introduction

II. Background ... A. History of Sports Betting ... B. Federal Intervention ... C. Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) ... D. Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association … 1. The Meaning of PASPA’s Authorization Provision ... 2. The Anticommandeering Doctrine ... 3. The Supremacy Clause and Preemption ... 4. The Severability Doctrine

III. Sports Gambling in Nebraska ... A. Constitutional Referendum ... B. Interstate Pressure ... C. Reasons for Legalization ... 1. Economic Incentives ... 2. Public Support ... 3. Consumer Protection ... D. Proposed Oversight ... 1. Nebraska Gaming Commission ... 2. Nebraska Department of Revenue ... 3. Nebraska Gamblers Assistance Program

IV. Conclusion

Nebraska should legalize and regulate sports gambling. In May 2018, the Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), a federal bill designed to ban sports gambling across the United States. Consequently, sports gambling became a state issue. Each state must now decide whether to continue prohibiting or to legalize and regulate sports gambling. The Supreme Court’s decision has sparked a state-by-state debate over the benefits of legalizing sports gambling. This Note examines those benefits and discusses how and why Nebraska should legalize and regulate sports gambling.

Part II provides a background on sports gambling. It examines three distinct periods of sports gambling history: the early colonization of America, the turn of the nineteenth century, and the time between the mid-1930s and the present. Part II also examines the federal government’s attempt to regulate sports gambling, including the enactment of PASPA. Part II further discusses the Supreme Court’s holding that PASPA was unconstitutional. It examines the Supreme Court’s analysis in Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association by discussing PASPA’s “authorization” provision and how it pertains to the anticommandeering doctrine, the Supremacy Clause, and the severability doctrine. In addition, Part II examines the fallout from the Supreme Court’s holding in Murphy and how each state must now choose prohibition or legalization and regulation.

Part III discusses why and how Nebraska should legalize and regulate sports gambling. It looks at the economic benefits of legalization, including how new streams of revenue can offset Nebraska’s growing deficit. Moreover, it examines how public sentiment supports legalization efforts. In addition, legalization would increase employment opportunities. Part III also discusses key consumer protection components and why regulations should be implemented. Finally, Part III proposes statutory language for creating the Nebraska Gaming Commission and enabling it to regulate sports gambling. The newly created commission would be directly supervised by the Nebraska Department of Revenue. In addition, Part III prescribes the regulatory power and responsibilities for the Commission, including tax and enforcement powers, and the responsibility to support the Nebraska Gamblers Assistance Program. Lastly, Part III examines the various pathways for the legalization of sports gambling in Nebraska.