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UIGEA, Online Gambling Prohibition Act, Again Under Discussion

By Arthur Levine, Sep 13th 2007
Online Gambling Prohibition Era

In 2006, when it was introduced, the unlawful online gambling Act was compared to the Prohibition Act. In the meantime, the online poker prohibition was aggressively enforced and after almost a year the problem is still under discussion. In fact, it is a concern for many others being pushed on to the tables of editorial desks, Capitol Hill, even discussed on podiums at presidential debates.

Regarding the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act there have been many opinions and this week we have a fresh one expressed in an editorial, signed by New Jersey Representatives Steve Israel (Democrat) and Pete King (Republican).

A discussion of the internet gambling prohibition appeared in the New York Post raising the validity of some of the arguments. The article suggests that the government should consider the economic value of the internet gambling business, so there should be put taxes on the business, not ban it. The article also calls for the Treasury Department, responsible for the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, to keep itself focused on its more important tasks (investigating counterfeit money, tracking terrorist financing, protecting the President) and not invest its energies in yet another chore.

Another powerful argument is the concern for gamblers' safety as US citizens continue to gamble online and are very likely to continue gambling online. The problem is that now they are deprived of protection that a government could assure them of. To that end, Israel and King are supporters of the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act (IGREA).

It is a large undertaking for the future of internet gambling to be regulated and taxed so that everyone can be satisfied. Until now we have not observed any changes, but what is clear is that the online casino gambling situation is still on many powerful people's minds and now in the pages of powerful newspapers.


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