US Online Gambling Bill Gains Momentum


In spite of the draconian ban in the US against online gambling internet bingo is rapidly increasing in popularity. Internet bingo is popular among the digital generation and most internet bingo players are under 35 years old. US gambling laws have had the effect of pushing US players to offshore bingo operations that may engage in less than scrupulous business practices. Anti online gambling legislation that was supposed to protect American citizens has had the opposite effect. Federal regulations are also sending billions of untaxed dollars offshore to unregulated gambling sites making matters even worse. For years Representative Barney Frank has led the fight to overturn current internet gambling laws but has been unsuccessful.

Recently Frank partnered with a Republican representative to sponsor a new bill that would tax. License and regulate online gaming sites doing business in the United States. Recent news reports indicate that the bill is gaining momentum in the US congress and many in the internet bingo industry are hoping that 2011 will be the year when once again American citizens will be able to play internet bingo legally. Many gambling giants like Harrah’s are lobbying congress for legalized online gambling. In US politics money talks and the lobbying of affluent gaming companies have raised hopes for the passage of Frank’s gambling bill.

Barney Frank is working with Republican John Campbell to sponsor the Internet Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act. Other congressional sponsors include Congressman Peter King, and Congressman Ed Perlmutter. Recently Frank told reporters “I’m pleased to be working with John Campbell as a co-sponsor of the bill. We worked together last year and I think this promises to be one of those unfortunately rare times when bipartisan activity can work.” Campbell said that although federal laws are in place US citizens continue to gamble online. Campbell stated, “Clearly Americans want to gamble on the Internet, and policy makers need to provide both the freedom to do so, as well as ensure that appropriate consumer protections are in place.”

The Poker Players Alliance issued a statement in support of Frank’s bill that read, “The time is now for Congress to step up and pass federal legislation, like the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act, that allows the entire country to benefit.” There is still strong opposition to online gambling from anti gambling extremists but support for legal online gaming is growing. The internet bingo industry is watching developments in the US closely and hopes that 2011 will be the year when the repressive law is overturned.