Congress Still Holding Up Online Gaming

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, one of the longest serving congressmen in the nation will continue to work on trying to get online gambling legalized. Barney Frank, a Democrat from Massachusetts, will be ending his legislative career when his term expires in 2012. One of his most highly publicized issues has been online gaming, of which he is an ardent supporter.


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Barney Frank, and his other congressional allies, believes that online gambling is an issue of personal freedom. Currently, there are severe restrictions on the rights of US citizens to participate in online gaming of any type. In fact, there are currently court cases against online gaming establishments, due to the heavy-handed restrictions placed upon them by the US government.

When the Internet first became a viable consumer medium, online gambling was one of the first uses to which people put it. In the United States, opponents of gambling have managed to successfully shut it down in the nation. Frank, however, and other senators and representatives who share his view that citizens should be able to decide for themselves whether or not online gaming is for them, continue to work on the issue and are optimistic that they should be able to get Congress to approve online gaming in the United States.

According to the article, Harry Reid (D-Nev) is also working on the issue. There are numerous congresspeople who are supportive of the idea of legalizing online gaming in the United States. Currently, however, The House Financial Services Committee, which Frank formerly chaired, is chaired by an Alabama Republican, Spencer Bachus, who opposes online gaming. This hasn’t dissuaded the supporters of online gambling from trying to get action taken on the measure. Partnerships between Frank and both Democratic and Republican congresspeople give supporters hope that US gamblers will soon enjoy the same freedom that most people around the world enjoy.

Pushing Forward

There are different proposals being debated among Congress members regarding how online gambling should be regulated, if it is made legal. Some proposals also recommend making certain types of online gambling legal, but not all. For example, Texas Republican Joe Barton supports a measure to legalize online poker, one of the most popular online games and, potentially, one of the biggest money makers if it were regulated like other forms of gambling.

While Barney Frank may be retiring, online gambling still has plenty of advocates in Congress. The difficulty will be getting measures through committees that are headed by people who ardently oppose gambling of any sort. If these hurdles are overcome, it should only be a matter of time before residents of the United States are able to enjoy the freedom to use the Internet to enjoy gambling at any one of the many different establishments that have been set up for it. Online gambling is already a huge industry in Europe and one of the most popular pastimes among a wide variety of people from all different walks of life. In nations where it is legal, it is regulated and safe.

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