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The first steps towards regulating the Internet gambling industry are already being taken by Democrats in the House and Senate. One of the first tasks for the incoming administration appears to be overturning some of the last legislation that President Bush’s administration passed.
Of note to the online gaming industry in the US is the UIGEA rules that were recently published. The rules have been criticized by legal experts that believe the government still has done nothing to make Internet gambling illegal in the US.
In Washington, there is already talk about examining closely some of the last pieces of legislation that President Bush signed in to law. The UIGEA falls into that category.
“Congress is going to have to roll up its sleeves and review these midnight regulations because it’s clear that they are part of a desire for the administration, as it heads out the door, to put some ideological trophies on the wall,” said Ron Wyden, Oregon Senator, to the New York Times.
While the UIGEA rules will not be the only legislation that is examined, it will be one of the major areas of focus. Ever since the Republicans adopted the UIGEA in 2006, Democrat Barney Frank has been trying to rally members of the House to overturn it.
Frank and several other representatives have been spreading the idea that what the US needs is regulation of the Internet gambling industry, and not a ban. Frank believes that the proper regulation could bring the US millions of dollars in taxes and revenue from online gambling companies.
The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, and the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, are both backing the idea of reviewing the last minute legislation of the outgoing administration. They both feel some of the legislation needs to be overturned, but concluded that it mus be President-elect Obama who sets the pace for when that is done.