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Best of Bradley Vallerius

Gaming Guru

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Frist pleased with initial effects of UIGEA

23 October 2006

Only three weeks have passed since Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist pushed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) through Congress but it has already dramatically changed the Internet gambling landscape.

"I would say that it is succeeding," said Frist's press secretary Caroline Weyforth. "Internet gambling was illegal and people were ignoring that fact. Overseas companies were ignoring U.S. law and coming up with ways around our laws, so all this bill did was basically put a mechanism in place to enforce existing laws."

UIGEA has already scared the online gambling industry's largest players away from the U.S. market. Public companies like PartyGaming and 888 feel the UIGEA has closed enough gaps in the law that it is no longer possible for responsible companies to offer wagers to Americans.

The ensuing stock crash wiped billions of dollars off the London Stock Exchange.

"It's unfortunate that stocks went down overseas," said Weyforth. "That's not something that anyone likes to see, but at the same time we are a nation founded on laws and those companies were fragrantly ignoring our laws.

"We don't want to see any companies not work in the United States, but we are founded on laws and these shareholders from the United States who were betting on US authorities to look the other way have been proven wrong in that aspect."

Not all companies are backing away from the U.S. however. Some, like PokerStars and Bodog, are betting that the law will prove unenforceable.

"PokerStars has received extensive expert advice from within and outside the U.S. which concluded that these provisions do not alter the U.S. legal situation with respect to online poker," said the company in a statement. "Furthermore it is important to emphasize that the act does not in any way prohibit you from playing online poker."

"We started off with Internet gambling being illegal and they found a way around it-- we've stopped that," said Heyworth. "No one would be surprised if they found another way around it. But again, the bottom line is that it is illegal, and there is now a mechanism in place to enforce that."

Frist pleased with initial effects of UIGEA is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.
Bradley Vallerius

Bradley P. Vallerius, JD manages For the Bettor Good, a comprehensive resource for information related to Internet gaming policy in the U.S. federal and state governments. For the Bettor Good provides official government documents, jurisdiction updates, policy analysis, and many other helpful research materials.

Bradley has been researching and writing about the business and law of internet gaming since 2003. His work has covered all aspects of the industry, including technology, finance, advertising, taxation, poker, betting exchanges, and laws and regulations around the world.

Bradley Vallerius Websites:

www.FortheBettorGood.com
Bradley Vallerius
Bradley P. Vallerius, JD manages For the Bettor Good, a comprehensive resource for information related to Internet gaming policy in the U.S. federal and state governments. For the Bettor Good provides official government documents, jurisdiction updates, policy analysis, and many other helpful research materials.

Bradley has been researching and writing about the business and law of internet gaming since 2003. His work has covered all aspects of the industry, including technology, finance, advertising, taxation, poker, betting exchanges, and laws and regulations around the world.

Bradley Vallerius Websites:

www.FortheBettorGood.com