Frank Fahrenkopf, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association, wrote a recent opinion piece on politico.com, pleading the case for federal regulation. This piece was a basic reiteration of what AGA has been proclaiming from their online rooftops since the first draft of the Reid-Kyl bill was leaked on the Internet.
Looking at the proposed bill, there is more at stake than just whether or not states choose to participate in the federally regulated poker program. The bill virtually eliminates all other gambling–including online state lottery sales–and essentially places the regulation hub in Nevada, where, arguably, most of the gambling regulation experts reside.
The real question citizens and states must ask themselves is the price they are willing to pay for consumer protection, problem prevention, adequate controls and prosecution tools, and the ability to play the game of skill they love for real money from the comfort of their living room.
And perhaps, given all our Congress must do in the next few weeks, it’s not really a question at the moment. We’d all like to drum up more income, whether it’s on the federal level, our regional districts, or our own home. We’d like to do by taking advantage of additional liberties and not by scraping more out of our pocketbooks.
The action or inaction of Congress to act on Internet Gambling Prohibition, Poker Consumer Protection, and Strengthening UIGEA Act of 2012 will surely define how our States and our nation responds to legal, online gambling. We’d believe our players have a right to be protected in an open, fair, and consistent manner throughout the country, and that states should be allowed to choose the programs they believe will benefit their municipalities and their communities. If it begins with the legalization of online poker, then let’s play.