ALBANY - Anti-gambling groups are challenging New York's new law legalizing daily fantasy sports contests, making the case that it violates the state constitution.
A lawsuit filed Wednesday seeks to overturn the 2016 law that permitted companies liked DraftKings and FanDuel to resume operations in the state, which was passed after the companies temporarily shut down in New York amid a legal battle with state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Among those backing the lawsuit are Stop Predatory Gambling, a national anti-gambling group.
The suit claims the law is in "direct violation" of the state constitution's ban on gambling because daily fantasy sports contests are "clearly gambling."
The constitution prohibits "pool-selling, bookmaking, or any other kind of gambling," aside from a handful of exemptions like the state lottery and betting on horse racing.
"'Interactive fantasy sports' and, in particular, DFS, constitutes gambling that falls within the express prohibition in" the constitution, the lawsuit contends.
The state Legislature passed the bill authorizing daily fantasy sports in June. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed it into law in August.
Daily fantasy sports giants like DraftKings and FanDuel offer contests in which users pay a fee to pick a mock lineup of professional athletes, with prizes paid out based on how that lineup performs on a given day or week.
The law explicitly says the Legislature does not consider "interactive fantasy sports" to be gambling. But the lawsuit contends that's not enough to comply with the constitution's ban.