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OpinionEditorial

New York’s gambling laws are a loser

The DraftKings Inc. website is arranged for a

The DraftKings Inc. website is arranged for a photograph on an Apple Inc. iPad in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015. Fantasy sports companies DraftKings Inc. and FanDuel Inc. raised a total of $575 million in July from investors including KKR & Co., 21st Century Fox Inc. and Major League Baseball to attract players to games that pay out millions of dollars in cash prizes in daily contests. Photo Credit: Bloomberg / Zia Morales

As many as 1.2 million New Yorkers were almost deprived of playing fantasy football for money this weekend with DraftKings or FanDuel. A New York State Supreme Court justice ruled Friday that the companies must stop taking action in the state. Hours later, an appeals court issued a reprieve to let betting go on — for now.

The games, in which contestants assemble teams from across a league and compete over who combines for the best statistics, are both luck and skill, and are gambling. In New York, only certain betting — such as on horses and lotteries and specific casinos — is legal. The lower court judge is right on the law, but our laws on gambling make no sense. And while a new law to permanently allow daily fantasy sports would be good for fans who enjoy these mostly innocent pleasures, an overhaul of gambling laws and oversight is what’s needed.

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