Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative against USA
The Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative, an advocate for online gaming regulation in the US, has hit out at the introduction of new legislation that would ban all forms of internet gambling with the exception of fantasy games and horseracing.
As reported by iGaming Business, Senators Lindsey Graham and Jason Chaffetz are sponsoring legislation in an attempt to ban online gambling in the country.
The legislation aims to reverse a decision in 2011 by Attorney General Eric Holder that a 1961 law used to ban online gaming only applied to sports betting. The new bills would expand prohibition to where it originally stood before the 2011 ruling.
Michael Waxman, a spokesperson for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative, said: “The idea that Congress could or would ban internet gambling is ludicrous and down-right foolish.
“Whether you like the idea of allowing access to Internet gambling or not, Americans are currently wagering billions a year online, most of which occurs in an unregulated marketplace.
“Given the freedom of the internet, attempts to prohibit this activity have never worked and will never work.
“The most responsible solution is for Congress to follow the lead – rather than attempt to roll back – the strict rules implemented in New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware to control the activity and protect consumers.”
Waxman also criticised Sheldon Adelson, the chairman of casino and resort company Las Vegas Sands Corporation, who has been a strong supporter of an outright ban on internet gambling.
“It’s laughable and completely disingenuous that a casino mogul would come out so forcefully against gambling online because, in his view, it’s the only way to protect consumers,” Waxman said.
“While Adelson preaches the need for prohibition, I certainly hope clearer heads prevail and acknowledge his actions are purely driven by bottom-line greed to the detriment of what’s truly best for consumers.”
However, Waxman did admit that while prohibition is not the answer to controlling online gambling in the US, he said that federal intervention is needed to control activities.
“Consistent rules across the country are needed to ensure every American is protected against money laundering, fraud and abuse,” Waxman said.
“While federal oversight is needed, individual states should decide whether to allow internet gambling within their borders.
“Senator Graham and Representative Chaffetz should respect the right of each state, not force a roll back of an industry that has already started to flourish in the US.”