New gambling regulation bill introduced

It's about time politicians started listening.

On Wednesday, Paul Lavers wrote a scathing column on Covers.com regarding how the American ridiculous endeavour to chase away Internet gambling while allowing the subprime mortgage situation to nearly collapse the American economy. Paul ended the piece by predicting the politicians would have to come around and embrace online gambling as a way to generate tax revenues and compensate for the slumping economy.

Not even a full day later, Representative Jim McDermott (D-WA) introduced the Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act (H.R. 2607),  designed to tax and regulate Internet gambling.

I know it seems unlikely McDermott read our column and immediately set to work creating his legislation to have it announced hours later. But it is fun to be ahead of the curve.

On the other side, my column from Monday failed to generate enough votes to have our online gambling question asked at the Democratic Debate held last night. So, we'll have to wait before knowing exactly where Barack Obama stands on gambling.

You win some, you lose some.

This proposed legislation is notable, if only for its sensibility. It doesn't propose any news taxes - it just proposes applying existing tax rules to online gambling companies.

As a companion bill to Representative Barney Frank's (D-MA) Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act (H.R. 2046), McDermott's bill fills all the gaps. Suddenly, the United States has the framework to make online gambling legal and regulated. It would generate anywhere from $8.7 billion to $42.8 billion in federal revenues over its first 10 years and I would wager it would be on the higher side of that estimate.

Adding another billion or five into the yearly tax stream can only be a good thing for the country as a whole. Think of the programs that could be funded.

McDermott's bill was not the only good news to be released yesterday. In separate news releases, both Antigua and Costa Rica announced that they are seeking WTO arbitration in their disputes with the US over America's online gambling restrictions.

The Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative website has released a good analysis  of the situation featuring some juicy quotes from Nao Matsukata.

"If the U.S. withdraws following another adverse arbitral decision," he says, "the country would face potential retaliation from all WTO Members affected by the arbitration, a pool of countries including the EU, Canada, and Japan... Inviting sanctions at a time when both the U.S. Administration and Congress are both striving to stimulate an economy on the edge of recession seems foolhardy at best."

This is the former Director of Policy Planning for the United States Trade Representative we're talking about - the government office that directly deals with the WTO. Hopefully more politicians start listening to him. He knows what he's talking about.

Other Recent Opinions:
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Posted by fiestaduck
6 years ago

Good news!
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Posted by UNDY
6 years ago

dude I didn't write "girl slapped" they edited me. See....christian right censors you too.
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Posted by UNDY
6 years ago

NOPE! It's because the extreme right wing of this nation is finally going to lose their greatest figure head in less than a year. The Christian right (born agains) will no longer hold sway on our economy and ethics. No pun intended, but I thank GOD for that!!! Do you think the books and the GMEN will split the juice? Will all of our online bets be at -120 starting out instead of -110. I can see that happening and then staying with my local book and kickin it old school like I have been since Bodog got girl slapped last year. Good stuff though
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Posted by thehermanator09
6 years ago

Finally, a politician that sees gambling as a reality, and not a threat to the youth of the USA. You can gamble on anything in the UK, and they don't seem to have any problems.
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Posted by fartnsniff
6 years ago

US ecomony is in serious need of cash flow....we are in serious trouble right now. Our dollar is worth garbage. This is a politician who discovered a nice and easy way to make a few billion dollars. FnS
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Posted by 3825
6 years ago

these bils will have little impact on sports wagering as they are written right now. Most importantly, they allow "sports leagues" to opt out, meaning that the NFL or any other entity can effectively ban wagering on their sport/league. Their greatest impact will be felt in the poker/backgammon areas, while the horse racing industry receives some extra validation. Google search either bill HR 2046 and/or HR 2607, there's a cool website with all the details as well as the progress of each bill. Regardless, this is a slow process, both of these bills began their life in 2007. McDermott originally introduced this bill in June of 2007, I'm guessing it was the "Big Game" that caused this to gather some mainstream media attention this week, in addition to the accounting report. At any rate, McDermott is a crazy, savy, old timer, he just might be the guy who cares enough to get this bill on the floor for debate and a vote in the future.
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Posted by jlgarciaiii22
6 years ago

The futures looking good......
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Posted by Emmittrudd
6 years ago

Wayne Allen Root!
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Posted by troy9828
6 years ago

-----If the Fed. expects to put a tax on persons' internet winnings, they they better be just as obliged to have people claim tax deductions off of their losses._------ this is what im thinking great article, continue to post these covers--
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Posted by sscott999
6 years ago

Now if we could just get a strong Libertarian candidate for POTUS.
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Posted by Up_n_them_guts
6 years ago

If the Fed. expects to put a tax on persons' internet winnings, they they better be just as obliged to have people claim tax deductions off of their losses. In which case, I've got one thing to say to Washington . . . " . . . bring 'em on . . . "
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Posted by 1st ashylarry
6 years ago

you can play online poker for money,,use credit card no problem,but you can`t bet sporting events, what`s the difference? hope it passes
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Posted by sincityisheaven
6 years ago

thank you for the update!!! Please keep posting anything new that is pertaining to this topic! Much appreciated...
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Posted by daneish
6 years ago

This has been obvious for years, the politicians just don't want people to enjoy themselves, I'll believe it when I see it.
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Posted by dleblanc
6 years ago

Here is the revenue analysis prepared by PriceWaterhouseCoopers. ESTIMATE OF FEDERAL REVENUE EFFECT OF PROPOSAL TO REGULATE AND TAX ONLINE GAMBLING http://www.safeandsecureig.org/media/taxestimate.pdf The numbers are hard to ignore!
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Posted by dleblanc
6 years ago

Ahead of the curve, great timing or does Paul have a crystal ball on his desk? It doesn't matter... this is a step in the right direction!
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Posted by Sammy
6 years ago

wow...that is great news. I'm liking this Jim McDermott. The tide is turning?
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Top Response

Posted by 3825
6 years ago

"these bils will have little impact on sports wagering as they are written right now. Most importantly, they allow "sports leagues" to opt out, meaning that the NFL or any other entity can effectively ban wagering on their sport/league. Th..."