Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Frank to Reintroduce Bill to Repeal UIGEA

Barney Frank is going to reintroduce a bill he authored in the last session to repeal the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act:

A senior Democratic lawmaker will push legislation this year to repeal a U.S. ban on Internet gambling that has hurt trade ties with the European Union, a congressional aide said.

“The bill introduction should happen in the next month,” a spokesman for House of Representatives Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank said…

“Mr. Frank will bring back legislation to repeal the UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act),” the spokesman said, referring to a Republican-crafted bill passed in 2006 when the party controlled Congress and the White House.

And this I was not aware of:

Anurag Dikshit, a founder of PartyGaming, pleaded guilty in December to Internet gambling charges and agreed to pay $300 million in fines. He still faces possible jail time under a deferred sentencing arrangement. Other PartyGaming founders have not settled with the U.S. Justice Department.

EU industry officials said the pressure on Dikshit to make a deal showed the Justice Department had crossed a major line in its prosecution of cases.

The DOJ crossed that line long ago. Here’s another area where I certainly hope the Obama administration will reverse the absurd and authoritarian position taken by Bush. But given the appalling track record so far, I’m not holding my breath.