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Successful Anti-UIGEA Bill

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It would appear that the hearing that took place on December 3 before the House Financial Services Committee for the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act of 2009 (also known as the anti-UIGEA BILL) went off successfully putting the regulation of online gambling in a favorable position.

Barney Frank, Chairman of the committee and the sponsor of the anti-UIGEA bill, stressed that the Government cannot tell adult Americans “what they should do with their own money on their own time on their own computer”. He added that there are lots of things on the Internet that is unsuitable for minors and that it is a threat to individual liberty to ban all those things.

Parry Aftab of Wired Safety, the Internet safety and help group stated that there was technology available that can be used to overcome underage gambling, compulsive gambling, fraud, identity theft and money laundering.

A representative of the Independent Community Bankers of America stated that it would be impossible for the banking community to comply with the UIGEA rules especially in view of the fact that there is no clear definition of illegal online gambling. He added that Frank’s bill had the full support of the banking industry.

Opponents of Internet gambling insisted that the UIGEA be implemented as soon as possible and claimed that collusion was possible in online gambling. Barney Frank refuted a claim made by the tribal chairman of the Morongo Band of Mission Indians in California that legalizing online gambling would harm the gambling rights given to Indians.

At the close of the hearing Barney Frank announced that a date would be set by the House Financial Services Committee for next year for debate and mark up.