What pro online gambling politicians have been unsuccessfully trying for years to do, the Justice Department has done in one fell swoop to make intrastate online gambling legal.
It seems like the Obama administration decided they had been missing a vital piece to the puzzle that has been denying the United States of a huge amount of taxable revenue all this time and they had suddenly found it. Undoubtedly some backroom deliberating back and forth and a good measure of political persuasion has resulted in the Justice Department coming forward on Friday and stating that the Wire Act of 1961, which has up until now been used as the big stick to enforce the illegality of all forms of online gambling, will be interpreted differently.
In fact, the wording of the Wire Act has been the main subject of much debate over the years. This is because it is unclear on many points over the illegality of all forms of online gambling. In fact the only area of gambling it is clear about being illegal is online sports betting. All other forms of online gambling have only been interpreted as falling into the same category, which they clearly do not. Until now, arguments put forward by pro online gambling groups were dismissed. Several high ranking politicians have proposed legislation to legalise areas of online gambling which have never technically been made illegal in the first place. So far not one Bill put forward to this end has been successful.
This change of heart would appear to be good news for States that are intent on bringing in state laws to allow the online sale of lottery tickets. It would also be cause for celebration for those few States that are also seeking to extend this sudden relaxation of the law into other forms of online gambling. Online poker and casino games are top of the list for those States and Indian reservations that are gearing up for what they hope will be a substantial windfall.
But there is still one major hurdle that needs to be overcome before the party hats can be put on, the streamers thrown and the party poppers popped. The UIGEA of 2006 is still in force and still prevents banks and financial institutions from processing funds from online gambling establishments.
Some States can now start planning how they are going to initiate their own online gambling operations. But they will still have to wait until the Federal laws are changed so all that tax money can actually be collected from the people who are waiting to start depositing and withdrawing their gambling dollars via their credit cards.