Little Support for Online Casino Prohibition Bill
According to industry insiders, Republican Senator Robert Goodlatte’s bill that could potentially ban online casino gaming has received little support from U.S. Congress in recent weeks. The Internet Gambling Prohibition Act (HR 4777), recently went before a House Judiciary crime sub-committee and failed to win more supporters. The main reason for the lack of interest in the online casino bill is said to stem from confusion over what the bill does and does not contain. One analyst noted that no vote was taken and a second hearing was not scheduled. The common consensus is that it will be another two weeks before the online casino bill is discussed again.
Criticism for the bill came from one fellow Republican Senator who said it would create “an enforcement nightmare for financial institutions.” This position also seems to be the one adopted by First State Bank’s vice-president, who has stated recently that monitoring transactions made to online casino operators would seriously overburden financial institutions. Opponents of the online casino bill lauded the criticism as an important victory and welcomed the delay.
Shares in online casino firms immediately rebounded as a result of the news. Party Gaming’s share price rose nine percent to 141.5 pence, while shares in Sporting Bet rose seven percent. Online payment processor Neteller, which processes tens of thousands of payments to online casino sites each day, also enjoyed a share increase of eight percent.