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US Congress Rethinking Internet Gambling Ban [Copy Link]

US Congress Rethinking Internet Gambling Ban

The US federal government is looking to raise cash by reversing its ban on Internet gambling.

Four years ago the US outlawed online gambling, forcing many gambling websites out of the country. However now the House Financial Services Committee has approved a bill that will effectively legalise online "non sports" gambling such as poker. It also will mean that the government will be able to tax winnings, with some saying it could bring in over $4 billion a year.

The bill, which still has a long way to go before it becomes law, is one of a number of initiatives Congress is looking at to generate cash for states that are struggling not to end up bankrupt like California. While the committee voted 41 to 22 in favour of the measure, it's not known yet if or when it might get to the floor of the House.

The initial ban was pushed by Republicans who were distraught at the prospect of giving citizens freedom to decide what is good or bad for them. One called the proposal "unfathomable" with another saying it would lead to "Open casinos in every home and every bedroom and every dorm room, and on every iPhone, every BlackBerry, every laptop." We're surprised he stopped there, perhaps banning the sale of playing cards would help?

It's no great surprise that online gambling websites are happy to hear that the law could be overturned with many hiring lobbyists to fight for the cause. However, it is likely that the revenues generated from taxation might outweigh grandstanding Republicans' hysterical claims that online gambling will lead to widespread moral bankruptcy in helping to get the ban revoked.

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