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Barney Frank Next Uigea Assault Planned For April
The chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Barney Frank, plans to introduce his next bid to overturn the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act this (April) month...but he will not be resorting to the subterfuges adopted by UIGEA's founders in getting the bill through.
In 2006 the UIGEA was pushed through a late night session of the 109th Congress on the eve of an electoral recess and attached to the totally unrelated and must-pass Safe Ports security bill.
The Washington publication The Hill reports that Frank intends to introduce his legislation as a standalone bill and will not seek to add it to must-pass legislation. This could mean that it will be much more difficult for his measure to emerge from Congress.
Frank told The Hill that he would not emulate the Republicans' tactics in passing the UIGEA, saying it is unclear whether the gambling ban would have become law if it had been forced to stand on its own merits.
He said it would be “inappropriate” to follow the Republican example.
“That is not my intention. It would be a mistake,” Frank told The Hill. “I want to do this with hearings, discussions and votes.”
Frank first introduced the bill last Congress in April 2007. It garnered 48 co-sponsors but was not able to move out of committee and earn a floor vote in the House.
Frank said he would reintroduce the bill soon. “After the break, definitely in April,” the chairman said. Congress returns from the Easter recess during the week of April 20, which would leave the Massachusetts Democrat a little under two weeks to introduce the bill this month.
Frank’s bill would remove the ban on Internet gambling, which Republicans fought hard to institute after heavy lobbying from conservative Christian groups when they controlled Capitol Hill. His legislation would regulate the practice as well as tax it, providing new revenues for the federal government.
According to a study by the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, taxing Internet gambling could produce as much as $51.9 billion in revenue for the federal government over the next 10 years. That figure could help attract votes to the bill from a number of conservative deficit hawks in the Democratic Caucus.
In an economic climate where a number of states are seeking to raise more money through expanding licensed land gambling, professional sports leagues including the NFL have joined religious groups in opposing efforts to regulate Internet gambling.
Both sides of the debate praised Frank’s pledge to move the bill as standalone legislation.
“We welcome a standalone bill, which would allow for a thorough discussion of all the issues relating to regulations and consumer protections,” said Jeffrey Sandman, a spokesman for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative, which backs Frank’s bill.
“The excitement over Congressman Frank’s bill is it would create an environment that would protect American consumers and include safeguards against underage gambling and compulsive gambling, which don’t exist right now,” Sandman said.
Officials with conservative groups that backed the Republican-authored ban on Internet gambling in 2006 also said Frank is taking the right path.
“I don’t think Republicans should have done that. We should have been courageous and put it on the floor as a standalone bill and I think we would have won, in my opinion,” said Jim Backlin, vice president of legislative affairs for the Christian Coalition of America. “I think it is good that Congressman Frank is not trying to attach [his bill] to a fast-track bill.”
Backlin said his coalition and other groups will lobby hard against Frank’s bill once it is introduced in Congress. He expressed confidence Frank’s bill will be defeated despite Democratic control of Congress. Backlin noted that dozens of House Democrats are representing districts that former President George W. Bush won in the 2000 and 2004 elections.
“That is a good chunk to work with, and we will probably get most of the Republicans. That is getting close to 218, which is what we need to defeat it,” Backlin said.
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PlaySugarHouse To Carry Konami Content -
Content provider Konami will provide its Gypsy Fire and Fortune Stacks slot games to Rush Street Interactive-operated PlaySugarHouse.com on an exclusive basis in the New Jersey real-money online and mobile wagering market.
ITF TERMINATES BETWAY SPONSORSHIP DEAL -
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has reportedly terminated Betway’s three-year sponsorship partnership as an extension to their anti-match fixing and sports integrity policy.
GSA To Launch European division -
The expansion enables the GSA to better focus on the regional needs of its members outside of North America and underscores its recognition and commitment to growing European membership.
Paddy Power Trading Update -
Company prevails despite adverse sports and US election results; Trump success cost the group GBP 5 million, whilst punter successes took another GBP 40 million in Q4-2016.
Tabcorp SunBets project -
The details were revealed this week in an IT News article quoting Tabcorp's chief information officer, Kim Wenn, who described the SunBets project as Tabcorp's biggest global venture yet.
China Lottery Sales Up in 2016 -
The Chinese official news agency Xinghua reports that according to figures from the Ministry of Finance released Monday, Chinese lottery sales in 2016 rose 7.3 percent year-on-year to 394.64 billion yuan (about US$57.53 billion).
New chairman and a new director for 500.com -
Chinese online lottery operator 500.com has announced major executive changes to the company with the apparently amicable departure of director and chairman Man San Law, as well as director Weiguo Zhao from its board of directors, effective January 20, 2017.
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