Nevada Congresswoman Dina Titus has written a letter to the Department of Justice to ask that online gaming not be disrupted in her state with a change to the 1961 Wire Act.
Online gaming is an activity that is very limited in the United States. In 2011, the Department of Justice decided to reinterpret the 1961 Wire Act, which allowed individual states to decide if they wanted to offer online casino and/or poker gaming. By 2013, Nevada had launched online poker gaming, with New Jersey and Delaware providing both online casino and poker games. With Donald Trump being signed into the President position and a new Attorney General in place, it seems that online gaming might be in trouble.
If the Wire Act were to be reviewed again and changed, it would harm the blossoming online gaming industry. The three states that began offering gaming in 2013 have done well and Pennsylvania just passed online gaming into law in October 2017. Other states are also considering the option already this year. To show support for iPoker and online gaming in general, Congresswoman Dina Titus of Nevada has written a letter to Rod Rosenstein, the Deputy Attorney General, to try and convince him to avoid reversing the 1961 Wire Act reinterpretation that took place when President Barack Obama was in office.
In her letter, Democrat Dina Titus stated that in Las Vegas, the area has seen that a regulated market is must better than an illegal one. Online gaming is not going to go away and a reversal of the Wire Act, according to Titus, would push consumers into black markets and hurt business. The congresswoman pointed out that there is a great deal of evidence that shows businesses that were once offering illegal services in Nevada and other states with online gaming legislation, no longer do so.
Congresswoman Titus invited Rosenstein to study the issue carefully and speak with industry leaders as well as consumers and regulators before any consideration is made to reverse the Wire Act. With a reversal, jobs in the online gaming industry would be eliminated, create growth within the illegal iGaming market and infringe on the rights of states.
For months now, there has been speculation that Trump might fire Rosenstein, but for now he remains in his position. There has also been speculation that online gaming could be at risk if the Department of Justice were to review the Wire Act. Trump has yet to weigh in on the issue and seems to be neutral, which his Attorney General Jeff Sessions has stated that he would consider reviewing the decision.
Opposition still remains against online gambling, with some not yet ready to give up. Shelden Adelson, the CEO of the Las Vegas Sands, has been a strong opponent to online gaming and continues to donate funds and use his pull to try and see the option eliminated.
So, while there are still no signs as that a big push is imminent for the Wire Act to be changed back to its original form, the threat still looms. Congresswoman Titus is using the letter to make it clear that online gaming needs to remain. Experts in gaming, regulators and even players can easily point out the benefits. It just seems that some people, including lawmakers and casino owners, are unable to see the positives of online gaming or just don’t want to see the benefits the industry can provide.