Casino Watch Focus has reported many times of the failed attempt by both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives to legalize online gambling. Each legislative session has ended with the same rules in place which effectively make gambling online illegal, and each subsequent legislative session begins with some attempts to legalize online gambling. Now, an online source is reporting that several new attempts are in the works, including one to legalize online poker with an option for each state to opt out:
U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, is drafting legislation that would legalize Internet poker, a spokesperson tells Digital Transactions News. “This is a poker-only bill,” the spokesperson says. Some Capitol Hill publications speculated that Barton would introduce his bill as early as this week, but that won’t happen, his spokesperson says. Barton is still lining up co-sponsors and working on the language.
Last week, U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash., introduced the Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act of 2011, H.R. 2230, which would set up procedures to collect taxes from legal online wagering. McDermott’s two cosponsors are U.S. Reps. John Campbell, R-Calif., and Barney Frank, D-Mass., who in March introduced their
Internet Gambling, Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act. That bill, H.R. 1174, would legalize online gambling except sports betting and have the U.S. Treasury Department regulate it. H.R. 1174 is identical to a measure the two offered in the last session of Congress that failed, according to a spokesperson for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative, a pro-wagering lobbying group.