May 14, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — Some in the sports betting industry are complaining that Barney Frank’s new Internet Gambling Regulation Consumer Protection & Enforcement Act dramatically short-changes companies seeking legalized sports betting in the United States.
Writing for MajorWager.com, Hartley Henderson explains how, unlike his prior anti-UIGEA bills, Frank’s new legislation does not include provisions letting sports leagues control online betting on their games. Instead, the law caters to the sports leagues by basically ruling out all forms of online betting on sports.
Quoted in the article, Barney Frank himself had this to say: "The expression by the professional leagues of shock at the notion that people would actually bet on games was one of the least persuasive emotional outbursts I have encountered, but we acknowledged the reality of it. No one will be betting on professional sports games."
Describing this comment as “inane”, the writer goes on to underline the hypocrisy of claiming that sports betting on professional sports doesn’t or won't exist. The truth is, as Frank is surely aware, that such betting not only exists but is an enormous industry — safely and fully within the grasp of the sports leagues themselves, as well as some big-time Las Vegas-style bookmakers.
It’s to be assumed that, knowing how passionately the National Football League and other similar sporting organizations support the UIGEA, that Frank left sports betting off the table in order to increase the chances for the new bill to be passed. In other words, in order to help ensure the legalization of online poker, online sports betting had to be sacrificed like the proverbial lamb.
There’s also the fact that the current trend in a number of states seems to be inching towards the legalization poker as a game of skill, not chance. So, Frank may also have wanted to help separate poker from the chance-based forms of betting that many poker advocates (such as the PPA) are trying so hard to distance itself from. Separating it from sports betting in his legislation would be a subtle way to make that point.
The MajorWager.com article goes into much greater detail (and offers much more passionate criticism of Frank and his intentions). Check it out here .