States and Online Casinos: Never Ending Battle
It's expected that this year, there will be even more
discussions between the State and the operators of online
casinos. Already opponents of online casinos are gathering to
prepare their attacks on the online gambling operations, luring
American players into their games.
In November 2005, Rep. Jim Leach from Iowa introduced the
'Unlawful Internet Enforcement Act of 2005' in an attempt to get
rid of the offshore online casinos. The chances are that there
will be no action on this bill until later this year, on the
final session of the 109th Congress.
Not for the first time, Leach wants to stop American gamblers
from playing in online casinos. With his bill, he wants to
prohibit the use of credit cards or any other payment methods
from being used for transactions from and to online casinos.
Rick Smith, Executive Director of the Interactive Gaming
Council, states that Leach and the other opponents of online
casinos have already partly reached their goal, since most major
US financial institutions now block transactions to the casinos
on their own initiative. For the last couple of years, it has
been hard to find a US credit card that you can use for
depositing in online casinos.
According to Smith, this proofs exactly how useless all the
efforts of Leach are. If more than 12.5 million Americans are
gambling in online casinos, despite the fact that most payment
methods don't allow transfers to the cashiers of online gambling
site, this doesn't sound like the solution to the problem.
Apparently, Leach and his followers are underestimating the
American gamblers grandly, since they seem to have no problems
finding other methods of online money transfer.
In trying to stop the online casinos from taking bets from
American Gamblers, Leach worked together with Senator Jon Kyl
from Arizona. Kyl is seen as the most persistent opponent of
online gambling, who has tried repeatedly in the last years, to
achieve the illegalization of the online gambling sites.
Unfortunately, Kyl failed to get his legislation concerning
online casinos approved.
Keith Furlong, Deputy Director of the Interactive Gaming
Council, believes that both Leach and Kyl are wasting the time
of the Congress in trying to stop the online casinos. Furlong
believes that the only thing that the Congress can do is trying
to regulate the business of online casinos, not prohibit it.
According to Furlong, legislation is needed to facilitate the
government licensing and strict regulation of online gambling.
Global expectations are that online gambling will be regulated
in the United States by 2007 at latest. Lawmakers will be forced
regulate and tax the industry.
In the same time that Leach and Kyl are trying to fight the
impossible battle with the online casinos, the number of
Americans that gamble on the internet is growing every year. The
extreme success of poker is yet another sign that the success of
online casinos isn't over yet and won't be for a long time…