TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: U.S. Senate Turns Aside Web Gambling Ban for Now

U.S. Senate Turns Aside Web Gambling Ban for Now

Reuters News Wire (
Thu, 15 Sep 2005 12:32:53 -0500

The U.S. Senate on Thursday turned aside an attempt to restrict
Internet gambling in a procedural move, but Sen. Jon Kyl vowed he
would try again and said he expected the legislation would become law

The Arizona Republican tried to attach language restricting Internet
gambling to an annual spending bill that must be passed this year, but
an unnamed Democrat objected to attaching an unrelated matter to the
spending measure under consideration.

Kyl said his legislation would require banks and credit card companies
to block payments to online Internet gambling sites. He said some
firms were already voluntarily blocking money transfers.

"We will proceed with this, it will become law at some point at some
time," the Arizona Republican said on the Senate floor. "There should
be no reason why we can't move forward on this."

Sen. Barbara Mikulski, a Maryland Democrat, said that a member of her
party had objected to attaching Kyl's language to the spending bill
but she was not sure who. Kyl urged the lawmaker to come forward so
the concerns could be addressed.

The U.S. Justice Department has said the laws that prohibit interstate
gambling apply to the Internet. But Americans have turned to offshore
gambling Internet sites as an alternative.

The Senate and U.S. House of Representatives have passed similar
legislation in the past but have been unable to reach agreement on a
single, identical bill, Kyl said.

Shares of online gambling sites in Britain moved higher on Thursday in
anticipation of the Senate action. Partygaming Plc moved up 5 percent
to 105 pence while Plc moved up 11.3 percent to 321
pence on London trading.

Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited.

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