SCOTUS has filings it needs to decide if it hears FL sports betting case

Pile of paperwork
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It took several months and a couple of extensions but the U.S. Supreme Court now has all the paperwork it needs to determine whether or not it will hear the case questioning the legality of the compact between the state of Florida and the Seminole Tribe of Florida.

On Tuesday West Flagler and Associates filed its reply brief to the Department of Interior’s response to the case, which came in earlier this month after the group was granted two extensions. With no other paperwork to come, the case now heads to the justices to determine whether or not they will grant a writ of certiorari.

In order for cert to be granted, at least four of the nine Supreme Court Justices must agree for the case to be heard.

In its response brief, West Flagler reiterated many of its arguments from previous filings. The brief also argued that logic of the Department of Interior and the Circuit Court was a cyclical catch-22 of sorts. In other words, the DOI and court said compact only applies to what happens on tribal lands and pushed the online betting component of the compact over to Florida state law. However, Florida then argued that the nature of the compact defines the betting off tribal lands as taking place on tribal lands.

Addressing the issue of whether or not the compact violated the federal Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), West Flagler challenged the DOI’s response, which said there were possible ways to offer sports betting without violating the financial law, noting that the compact actually included terms of service that cited credit cards, debit cards and e-wallets as options to fund accounts, which would potentially violate UIGEA.

The group also responded to the question of whether the compact violated the Equal Protection Clause, refuting what the DOI argued:

“The remainder of the Government’s response to the Equal Protection argument collapses into tautology that so long as the Compact is understood as only authorizing gambling on Indian lands, the Equal Protection challenge to the Federal approval of an exclusive race-based monopoly off Indian lands is not presented. But as shown above and in the Petition, there is no doubt that the Compact intends to give the Tribe a race-based monopoly for sports betting off Indian lands.”