The House Committee on Financial Services continued hearings today on Online gambling and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA).There were representatives from the United States Federal Reserve System, the US Treasury Department, American Bankers Association plus many more who testified today, mostly about the problems of the UIGEA, how it is unenforceable and all of the problems that were associated with.The AP, New York Times, Washington Post and other big media outlets along with several gambling sites all reported the story and most all had the same theme that a prohibition on Internet Gambling is not working.
Louise Roseman who is the head of the Federal Reserve’s bank operations testified that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act is to vague and does not give the banks clear direction of what is an illegal gambling transaction.Joshua McCarthy of Online Casino Advisory reported headlined with this “Congressional Hearing Finds Unanimous Disapproval of UIGEA.” They went on to quote Louise Roseman as saying “the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act is so poorly written, actual enforcement of the law against online gambling is problematic at best. “The challenge we have is interpreting something, particularly federal laws, that Congress itself isn’t sure what they mean.”
The website Gambling911 called Prohibition on Internet Gambling a Failure. They quoted Wayne Abernathy of the American Bankers Association’s executive vice president of financial institutions policy and regulatory affairs as saying, “The path leads to an increased cost and administrative burden to the banks and an erosion in the performance of the payments system, but it will not result in stopping illegal Internet gambling transactions.”
The online website Casino Gambling Web said “Online Gambling Ban Regs Get Ripped Apart at House Hearing” and also quoted Wells Fargo spokesperson Ted Kitada as testifying that “his company completes more than 30 million transactions a day and deciphering which of those 30 million transactions would be illegal Internet gambling transactions would be not only cumbersome, but also a major hindrance to thequality of service his company offers its customers.”Barney Frank who last year introduced H.R. 2046, the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act of 2007 which would allow US residents to legally bet online by way of an exemption to properly licensed operators was also critical of the UIGEA once again. Frank called the bill “a bizarre piece of legislation”The news has been more positive for the future of online gambling in recent weeks.
The iMEGA group who had sued the United States government was reported to be very satisfied with a recent Judge’s ruling giving the group legal standing to challenge the law in an appellate court. Last month Professor I. Nelson Rose discussed how the United States was becoming more and more isolated in the world and how other countries such as the U.K. decided that internet gambling was acceptable if regulated.