U.S. Online Gambling Debate Continues, New Bill Introduced

Written By Janice Doughtrey

As both sides argue the pros and cons for legalizing and regulating online gambling in the U.S., Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts has introduced a new bill this month in a second attempt to reverse the ban on Internet gambling enacted when Republicans led Congress.

This second iteration would give the Treasury Department the ability to license and regulate online casinos and companies that serve U.S. players. As the law stands right now, no financial institutions in the U.S. are allowed to conduct or handle transactions made to and from Internet gambling sites.

And of course, with the introduction of the legislation comes arguments for both sides. Though many are sure what side they stand on there are few who can safely say what kind of benefits or damages might be done by allowing online gambling sites to operate in the U.S.

Mr. Frank pointed out that legalizing internet gambling would create more tax revenue and is an issue of personal liberty in which the government should neither support nor promote while the Poker Players Alliance, strong supporters of the bill, have over $1 million members and the support from former Senator Alfonse M. D’Amato, Republican of New York.

While on the other side of the fence you have social conservatives, professional and amateur sports organizations (including the NCAA) who argue the bill could threaten the integrity of competitive sports while many others who argue for issues around under age gambling, addictive behavior and lax regulations. As the bill makes its way around congress it will be interesting to see how the issue unfolds in the U.S.

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