|Another attempt to restrict Internet gambling through credit card companies came into view this Saturday when Rep. John LaFalce, D-N.Y., announced his intentions to ban the use of credit cards or any alternative means of payment for transactions with online gambling sites.|
The bill follows a similar ban proposed by Rep. Jim Leach, R-Iowa in February, which also sought the collaboration of credit card companies to help restrict Internet gambling. LaFalce originally co-sponsored Leach’s bill, but withdrew his support after Leach exempted horseracing sites from the bill.
LaFalce’s new legislation was described by an aide as “A more sweeping prohibition than legislation offered in February by Rep. Jim Leach, R-Iowa.”
Although many critics of this approach have branded it ‘unworkable’ due to lack of technology and the freedom of the Internet LaFalce believes that this is the best method to restrict online gaming, saying in a recent press release, “To me the answer is simple. We cut off Internet gambling at its source by prohibiting the primary payment vehicles that make online betting possible.”
LaFalce aide Dean Sagar said that the bill would put the onus on credit card companies to decide the legality of online gaming sites.
Critics of the bill included Marc Falcone, a gambling analyst of Bear Stearns who said of the bill, “Given the fact that we feel the business (of Internet gambling) is always going to exist, it would be a big challenge to implement this legislation. The real question is whether Internet gambling can be regulated or not, and I don’t think that the technology exists right now.”