Friday August 9, 2013 : AUSSIE PLAN TO BAN CREDIT CARD BETTING
It's an election year Downunder – be prepared for political posturing
With a contentious federal election looming, it is not surprising that Australian politicians are starting to pose and posture, with gambling a premier and in recent times high profile target.
leader Tony Abbott wants to ban Aussie gambling companies – especially those online – from accepting bets or account top-ups via credit card.
As usual the call is ostensibly to protect the consumer, but there are political undertones in Abbott's stated intentions to dump Labor moves to put limits on poker machines by abandoning trials of the controversial mandatory pre-commitment system; oppose the Greens plan to impose a $1 bet limit on pokies; do away with Labor's national gambling regulator, who allegedly duplicates the role of individual states; and introduce laws restricting how gambling is advertised.
Liberal MP and anti-gambling campaigner Alan Tudge supports the idea of stopping gambling companies giving credit to punters, saying that allowing credit card deposits runs contrary to the principle that responsibly gambling should be all about punters gambling within their means.
Tudge said the Abbott view will "…provide some basic protections for problem gamblers."
"It is one thing to lose everything in your savings account," he added. "It is another thing entirely to be able to literally gamble your house away without leaving your living room."