Congressman Frank Not Optimistic On Internet Poker Federal Legalization

Veteran politician does not see legalisation in the US happening this year

Congressman Barney Frank, who retires next January after 32 years of service as a Democrat politician in both Massachusetts and Washington DC, has done more than most to create a better political and legal climate for online gambling in the United States.

But this week even Congressman Frank was pessimistic about the chances of federal legalisation this year, admitting he had doubts on the success of legalisation moves in Congress this year, although he acknowledged that there was considerable momentum in individual states for legalisation.

Opining about unlikeliness that a federal bill will be successful this year, Frank commented: "It's still possible. Reid wants to do it. A lot of people here want to do it. It might get done in the lame duck [session of Congress]. It could get done as part of an overall package. But I think other things will replace it."

The opposition from some Indian tribes, and the lack of full support from arch anti-online gambling opponent Sen. Jon Kyl stand as negative influences: "We might have to wait until Kyl is out of office for this to get done. But it's going to happen within the next couple years," Frank said.

Congressman Frank identified the Department of Justice change of policy toward the Wire Act as a key element in increasing the momentum for legalisation, saying:

"What is galvanizing things is the interpretation of the Wire Act by the Justice Department and the threat of different states doing different things. The chaos inherent in that is a good argument for legislation. The best I can say is that, if the Senate passes something, I think we can get it through the House. But the Senate has got a lot of problems these days."

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