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Online Casino News - November, 2009

CNBC's "Closing Bell" Debates U.S. Online Gambling Regulation


  Seed Newsvine

by Margaret Oliveira, News Staff Writer

November 21, 2009

Once again, more media coverage is being given to the U.S. online gambling regulation debate, and this time around it's none other than the popular financial news program "Closing Bell" on CNBC. Examining the topic "The Future of Online Gambling", a discussion hosted by Melissa Francis involved two leading U.S. gaming industry analysts - Andrew Parmentire of Height Analytics and David Katz of Oppenheimer.

Surprisingly, both men agreed with one another on the program (usually you get differing viewpoints in these types of pundit discussions), citing that it is not a matter of "if" online gambling, including poker and online casino betting, becomes legalized and regulated in the States, but rather, "when" the UIGEA is overturned and regulations to tax U.S. facing online gambling operators is embraced by lawmakers.

Both men agreed the issue has become more of a debate on pragmatism, rather than morality, which has hitherto been the deciding point on gambling as a whole. This trend alone, is evidence enough of a growing shift taking place, and that regulating online gambling is being viewed as the most practical thing to do during a time in which the U.S. economy is in desperate need of tax revenue. Doing so would bring in an estimated $50 billion for offsetting social programs said Parmentire.

Coupled with the successes of Britain, where online gambling legislation was passed in 2005 - now bringing in millions of tax revenue with little or no rise in fraud, money laundering and problem/underage gambling cases - as well as the growing interest and pressure land-based casino giants like Harrah's are beginning to voice for the cause of regulation, U.S. lawmakers really have no choice now but to take a good hard look at the possibility of implementing Federal guidelines to regulate online gaming activities.

And, of course, there's Barney Frank's bill, the Internet Gambling Regulation Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act, floating about and doing the rounds with members of the U.S. Senate and House, and gaining a stead stream of supporters.



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