Barney Frank Internet Gambling Bill Delayed Until Week of May 4th

According to an article released by Reuters on Tuesday, legislation to alter the landscape of the internet gambling industry in the United States will not be introduced by Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) until next week. Frank had originally stated that a bill favorable to the industry would be introduced in March. Then, an interview with The Hill revealed that it would not be seen until after Congress’ Easter recess. Now, legislation to overturn or clarify the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) will likely become a reality during the week of May 4th. A source close to Poker News Daily explained that pressure from “the guys writing checks” to release a bill may be taking precedence. In order to see time on the floor of the House of Representatives, past bills have undergone mark-ups and received amendments. Therefore, the bill Frank ultimately introduces may not be the final legislation enacted. Frank told Reuters, "We'll be introducing it next week and I plan to move on it.” His previous attempt at creating a full licensing and regulatory framework for the industry came in the form of the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act, which was introduced in 2007 and numbered HR 2046. The bill, along with a companion tax bill that was introduced by Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA), would have generated up to $52 billion in revenue over a 10 year period for the U.S. Government, according to a study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers. On the reason for the two month delay, Reuters explained, “Frank said his Committee has been busy with other measures addressing the credit crisis and proposals to reform financial regulation.” Frank made two attempts to clarify the UIGEA during the 110th Congress. Together with former Republican Presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-TX), Frank sponsored HR 5767, the first version of the Payments System Protection Act. However, amid pushback from Congressman Spencher Bachus (R-AL) as well as the failure of an amendment by Congressman Peter King (R-NY), HR 5767 failed to make it out of the House Financial Services Committee. In a June vote, King’s amendment was trumped by virtue of a 32-32 tie vote. An oral vote on HR 5767 saw the “Nays” outnumber the “Yays.” In September, Frank introduced HR 6870, the second installment of the Payments System Protection Act. The bill passed out of Committee by a 30-19 vote, but then fell by the wayside as the global economy sputtered shortly thereafter. HR 6870 called for the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve to collaborate with the Attorney General’s office in order to determine what is legal and illegal under the UIGEA. The bill would have also suspended the UIGEA except for its directives related to online sports betting. Despite being allowed to opt out of HR 6870, professional sports leagues such as the NFL came out against it. In March, the New York City-based NFL hired Jeff Miller to be its first full-time in-house lobbyist. His is charged with monitoring events on Capitol Hill and has pledged to support enforcement of the UIGEA. Miller told the Associated Press last month, “We want to maintain the integrity of the game, and gambling threatens that." The NFL completed its annual Draft over the weekend, with University of Georgia standout Matthew Stafford being chosen first overall by the Detroit Lions. Stafford received a six-year contract with over $40 million guaranteed. Although a final copy of the proposed legislation has not been publicly released, Reuters claimed it “would overturn a law imposed during the Bush administration that has hurt U.S. trade ties with the European Union. Frank said the bill was being drafted this week.” Late last month, investigators from the European Commission found the United States to be in violation of its World Trade Organization (WTO) obligations due to the country’s stance on internet gambling. The Commission’s findings came as a result of a complaint filed by the Remote Gambling Association. A call placed to Frank’s press secretary was not returned as of press time. Stay tuned to Poker News Daily for the latest news from Capitol Hill. source

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PokerPro Bronze 3
4767d ago
Here's to Barney Frank! I hope this goes through as soon as possible, it would really help with the stimulous package Obama introduced and will do nothing but good for our USA economy!
Posted by PF_Jeff on 04/28/2009 6:04PM [ Reply ]

Yes!! We need that law to go through!