After all the tumult caused by the busting of online gambling officials, the industry, quite rightly, is fighting back.
The American Gaming Association (AGA) is now working towards an online poker bill, which will likely be introduced to the U.S. Congress in the next month or so, as lawmakers and casino executives have been in discussions since the events of April 15, according to Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr., President and CEO of the AGA.
The legislation would align with the constitution, allowing states to decide on the issue.
This is as it always should have been.
Let the people decide. Let them vote.
“You have to make sure each state has the right to say yay or nay,” said Fahrenkopf.
While the AGA’s job is to promote and protect the country’s gaming industry, it has remained neutral to online gaming bills that have come before Congress in the past, as well as individual state bills to provide internet poker.
The only real solution to the problem is to have the federal government get its act together.
If a blanket law was passed for the United States, the country could protect an estimated 15 million Americans who go online to gamble, and tax a poker share that could provide about $2 billion annually in tax revenue.
For Fahrenkopf, one of those benefits takes priority, as the major selling point of federal legislation is not dollars or an estimated 10,000 new high-tech jobs.
“I view online poker legislation as an anti-crime-consumer-protection bill,” he said.
“Now the result is also that it will generate some revenue. It will generate some revenue for the states involved, the states where the bettors are, and revenue generated to the federal government because there will now be tracking on winnings. People who are winning at online poker will have to pay income tax.”