Health Care Online Gaming Bill Yanked
September 24, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — Just days after its introduction, Democratic Senator Ron Wyden has withdrawn an amendment that sought to help fund health care reforms in the United States by legalizing and taxing online gambling.
A spokesperson for Wyden told The Hill that the senator did not want to introduce a bill so controversial into such a critical issue at such a sensitive moment. He had submitted the amendment on Tuesday.
The Democratic leadership had signaled their disapproval of the bill and its “controversial” tone, The Hill reports.
“Changing the laws regarding online gaming is a significant detour from healthcare, a detour that Sen. Reid agrees is not appropriate at this time,” said a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).
Other Democrats disagreed. “Money’s money. If that’s the price we pay, that’s the price,” said Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), who also has an online gambling bill in the U.S. Congress.
“It’s a great idea,” Barney Frank agreed. “Why should we leave all that money untaxed?”