It seems that the Christmas spirit has also hit the Justice Department who announced on December 26th an initiative to look at the archaic 1961 Wire Act law in a new way. It was advertised in an in depth article in the Wall Street Journal. The 1961 Wire Act up until recently was used as a way to prohibit all forms of internet gambling across States and within States in the US. The Justice Department has now decided that the Act which is full of difficult and contradictory language now only refers to “a sporting event or contest”. What this means in layman terms is that the Justice Department seem to be finding a way around the age old Act so that States across the US can approve of and offer legalized gambling.
The announcement from the State Department comes a day after Nevada announced the legalization and approval of state regulated poker. Washington DC is another State that has voted in the past to allow the State Lottery to operate online poker but to date has not actually passed the law. This new initiative from the Justice Department in effect is approving regulated online gambling in different states and allowing players to place bets within the State that they live. On a positive note this initiative is also a way to create more jobs and industry for each state as well as a way for the State itself to earn money as licenses will need to be granted for each online operation and maybe even a percentage of all revenue from the games and casinos will be demanded by each State.
As yet there has not been any mention of allowing bets across different States, in other words the new initiative is intrastate i.e. for single States. But, it is thought that if two States allow the online gambling and gaming then players will also be able to bet across State boundaries. The support of the local government for online gambling in each State does provide some worry for a number of people because of the concern for over gambling i.e. spending more than can be afforded. But with the State regulations and clear policies on responsible gambling this concern has already been dealt with and continues to be dealt with. This new initiative by the Justice Department has been readily welcomed by the online gaming industry and provides a lot of hope and confidence where new jobs will be created together with new opportunities in many areas of each State that participates.