US Sports Betting Urged to be Reviewed

Publish: 18.11.2018
The patchwork of regulations in the sports betting industry has led the Wisconsin Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner to call upon the United States Department of Justice to review the landscape on a federal level.

Ever since the Supreme Court did away with the sports betting ban in the United States in May, some states have hurriedly crafted regulations that could help in regulating the wagering industry within their borders. Other states, however, are still struggling with regulation, despite their interest in getting serious revenues from the industry.

Sensenbrenner is now calling upon the agency to bring some potential oversight in the sports betting industry. He sent a letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein this week, asking the DOJ to provide their perspective on the sports betting laws, including the Wire Act which concerns inter-state wagering.

The Rep. is the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations which took testimony on sports betting in September this year. Once the hearing is completed, he noted that’s the Congress needs to intervene in the industry. The Rep. doesn’t appear so happy with the new interpretation of the PASPA and wants the federal government to do something about it.

He noted that sports betting could be connected to money laundering, identity theft, and terrorism. Problems like this have been cited by gambling opposers in the past as well. However, if states like New Jersey are studied, then the positive effects of gambling become very pronounced. The state was able to get huge revenues via its online gambling and sports betting operations.

Sensenbrenner has listed three possible solutions for the sports betting problem. He said that the DOJ could possibly choose to enact the ban imposed federally before the PASPA was struck down. He said that he doubts that this would happen since many states have already enacted new rules for legalizing sports betting.

The second option is to create federal standards for the industry so that the inconsistent regulations could be managed. Finally, it suggests that the states will be deferred to related to the regulation in the gambling activity within their boundaries. The third option is the most favored scenario as states have already started regulating the sports betting industry.

Sensenbrenner also said that the worst choice for the Congress is to do nothing at all. However, he noted that if anything had to happen, it could take months or even years to develop and enact a regulation.