2/4/10 – In an op-ed piece that appeared in the Washington publication Roll Call, Representative Jim McDermott this week reinforced calls for a more pragmatic approach to sports betting by Congress.
In his article titled “All Bets Are Not Off on Super Bowl Sunday" McDermott highlights how an expected "…99 percent of wagers on the Super Bowl will be placed illegally online or through a bookmaker, where consumers have no legal protections and are left vulnerable to exploitation." Bet on the Superbowl Now.
The proliferation of illegal betting reinforces how government efforts to prohibit online gambling have failed, which, Rep. McDermott argues, should encourage Congress to adopt a more sensible policy approach.
The Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act (H.R. 2267), legalization introduced by Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank and supported by Rep. McDermott, would regulate Internet gambling activity and require licensed operators to put in place systems to protect consumers and collect applicable fees on the activity.
Though Chairman Frank's legalization would not allow online wagers on sports, McDermott states that the legalization's passage "could open the door to allowing this activity in the future." Frank’s measure has already attracted the support of 65 politicians.A Joint Committee on Taxation analysis found that the U.S. could receive up to $41 billion in federal revenue over the next decade if Internet gambling is regulated as proposed.