It’s been a magical run here the past few months, but my blogging time with the good folks of LexisNexis has come to an end. When I first started in January, the DOJ had finally announced it was reversing its long-held position that the Wire Act prohibits all forms of online gambling and instead, was adopting the position that the Wire Act only prohibits online sports gambling. Since then, we’ve chatted about prohibition, the failure of iGaming in D.C., sports gambling in New Jersey, and Utah becoming the first state in the nation to criminalize online poker playing. We’ve come a long way indeed, but for my last post I will leave you with a state of the online gambling union – a snapshot of where the online gambling movement stands today.
New Jersey, still hot in pursuit for bringing online gambling to the nation’s garbage dump, once again has a bill sitting in the state legislature that would legalize online gambling within the state. Unlike other past proposals, New Jersey’s bill is groundbreaking in that it will permit bets from out of state and even out of country bettors, so long as those bettors reside in a place where online gambling is legal (sorry Utah). After swift approval in committee in early April, the bill may make its way up to Governor Chris Christie in the coming weeks. Unlike the last go round, industry insiders expect that Christie will sign the bill this time if it comes across his desk – that is – if he can find it amongst all the McDonald’s on it.
Out on the gold coast, California recently jumped on the bandwagon following the DOJ’s change of heart. Several bills sat idly in various committees for years prior to the opinion from the DOJ, but since December, lawmakers in California are finally getting serious about legalizing online gambling. Under a current bill in the legislature, card clubs, tribal casinos, and OTBs could obtain 10-year licenses to offer online poker over the Internet. Within the next two years, California would transition in other casino games such as black jack, craps, and get excited, grandma… BINGO!
Moving forward, expect more states to throw their hat in the ring as online gambling stands to bring in billions of dollars in the U.S. On March 24, 2012, Illinois sold the first online lottery ticket in the nation and it’s only a matter of time before more states follow suit and offer games of chance over the Internet. With serious regulations in place, licensed casino operators, and government oversight, online gambling is likely to be a boon for cash-strapped states and an overall enjoyable experience for all those that don’t lose their life savings in a drug-fueled 24-hour online gambling bender.
For those that miss the boat (yeah I’m still picking on you Utah), guess you should’ve been a reader over here on the Fordham Law Firm Marketing Internet Gambling Blog. Thanks for reading folks. It’s been a pleasure.