Nevada Representative Shelley Berkley's proposal to launch an independent study of the pros and cons of legalising Internet gambling in the United States, H.R. 2140, the "Internet Gambling Study Act," goes before the House Judiciary Committee this week for markup.
The bill, which has the support of the American Gaming Association and 73 political co-sponsors, was introduced in May 2007 and proposes a one-year study on Internet gambling conducted by the National Academy of Sciences.
Opposition from pressure groups like Focus on the Family Action is already evident, with spokesman Chad Hills claiming that HR2140 is nothing more than the promotion of online gambling disguised as research.
His view is not shared by other industry observers, who contend that a in-depth, professional and independent study would confirm or dispel diverse perceptions by providing facts on Internet gambling, the technologies available to obviate criminal, problem or underage usage and the taxation implications of a regulated and legalised online gambling industry.