Legislators who are opposed to online gambling for the United States have tried relentlessly to see the activity banned. Every time legislators propose measures that would create an overall ban, the legislation is stalled. Opponents in Congress have now decided on a difference method of attack. A ‘study’ bill has been proposed along with an iGaming moratorium.
An overall ban of online gambling has been denied thus far as proposed legislation has been unable to gain ground in legislation and has been met with contention from lawmakers of various states. It is now being reported that in Washington, a proposal has been mentioned that would impose a moratorium of two years, which would prevent individual states from creating legislation for online gambling while the federal study would take place. The moratorium would not harm the gaming taking place in Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey, but other states would not be able to legalize gaming.
The efforts behind an overall online gambling ban in the United States are being pushed by Sheldon Adelson, the head of the Las Vegas Sands as well as GOP donor. Adelson has several legislators lined up for support and has used his power and money to push for an overall federal ban of the activity. Adelson is behind the Restoration of America’s Wire Act legislation and continues to try and find a way to stop efforts of iGaming legislation.
The Poker Players Alliance Executive Director, John Pappas, stated that an online gambling moratorium would be nothing more than a prohibition in sheep’s clothing. Pappas feels that since opponents cannot get RAWA through the front door they are using this method to squeeze in the back.
Back in 2014, when the midterm elections rolled around, Adelson gave more than $25 million to various groups that could help him push his agenda. However, he was still not able to push leaders to add the ban to the omnibus spending bill of 2014. There has also been several groups that are coming out opposed to RAWA. These groups include the Fraternal Order of Police, National Conference of State Legislators and the National Governors Association.
Pappas continued to reiterate his point by stating: “A moratorium is even more troubling for the notion of states’ rights and the 10th Amendment. It would give favored status to those states who already offer regulated iGaming and put the brakes on others who want to provide these consumer protections to their citizens. Of even greater concern, a moratorium does nothing to stop the unlicensed, unregulated overseas operators from continuing to flourish in the U.S. marketplace. It only tells states they can’t exercise responsible oversight.”