A Compromise Adelson Can Live With? The US Could have Poker but not Online Casino

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New gambling bill intends to make online casinos in US a thing of the past, while in efforts to appease players, online poker is supposed to remain untouched.

Sheldon Adelson is among the wealthiest individuals on the planet. He commands a fortune upwards of $37 billion. His main interest lies in the gambling industry, although he also maintains a number of other smaller business ventures.

His main worry is that online casinos could one day take over many US states, which propelled him to think about ways he can stop that from happening. With his political connections, he is fighting to put a stop to all forms of internet gaming once again.

However, he may have to content himself with a bill that would ban all kinds of gambling, except online poker, which is considered to be less of a threat to his gambling empire.

Sheldon Adelson

A prominent businessman who has been in the casino industry virtually his whole life. He serves as the chairman and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Casino.

Currently, he is trying to sway much of the political support his way. He intends to get use his political connections to ban online gambling, which could prove problematic considering that two states already offer online casinos in the US.

• Sheldon Adelson pushing for online gaming ban

• Bill to ban online casinos presented to Senate

• Online poker would remain untouched

His plan is to shut down online casino operations, as they pose a threat to his land-based casino. Internet based casinos have been gaining considerable support in recent times, as many customers believe online operators offer a better and more convenient services.

The Internet Gambling Prohibition and Control Act of 2014 (IGPCA) shares similarities with the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) which is supported by Adelson and was presented to the House and Senate in March.

Some would argue that online poker also has the potential to deter potential customers away from Adelson’s casino and go elsewhere, however poker is not viewed as bad as online casino play.

According to the IGPCA, poker does not seem to pose a challenge to the overall land-based gambling operations that Adelson maintains.

Online poker

Unlike online casinos, online poker does not have a negative perception about it in the US. It is not regarded as a sinister gambling game. It is socially more acceptable to partake in poker games than online casinos.

Additionally, many are convinced that poker does not have the same risks associated to problem gambling or negative social aspects. Some people view poker as a game of skill or even as a sport. It involves playing other people, creating a more social atmosphere, while casinos on the internet are there to only take one’s money.

The IGPCA deems online poker sites in the US as a harmless playing game, and has no intention to ban it, as that would go badly with numerous online players.

Some critics view this is a tactic or ploy by the bill’s supporters, to try to appease online gambling customers, should the bill be passed. If they were to take away everything from the online players, then they the IGPCA bill would be met with more opposition.

Nevertheless, online players should not be very worried as the law is unlikely to be passed, as experts believe that the bill is not feasible in reality. There are far too many aspect to consider, while the cost of implementing the bill would also be prohibitive.

Online casinos

New Jersey and Delaware are the only two US states that have the right to offer their residents online casino services. After years of strong opposition and countless battles, they managed to overturn the Wire Act that prevented them from pursuing legalization of online gaming.

However, once again certain government officials and gambling-related businessmen like Adelson, want to reinstate the old law. Nevada maintains the right to offer online sportsbooks and online poker, however if the new bill is passed, then only poker would remain on offer to online players.

What worries Adelson is that many customers have expressed a desire to see more online casinos legalized in other states, which would in turn shift customers away from his business. What is surprising is that he could create an online version of his casino, just like MGM and Caesars entertainment did, but he chooses not to follow suit.

Furthermore, unlike traditional casinos he believes that online casinos have the potential to lead to serious social problems with all sorts of repercussions to all age groups. He expressed concern that internet gambling cannot be as effectively regulated as land-based casinos, which will serve badly to the public.

Adelson’s opponents believe that he is simply using the social aspect as good arguing point of why to put a stop to mobile casinos.

Taking into account the time it takes for the US Senate to inspect a certain bill and then pass a judgedment whether or not to pass it, some years may pass before anything comes to fruition.

The issues with reinstating a ban on online gambling would become a problem with the current online gaming providers. The question is how would they proceed with their operations. Would they continue to provide online services to their respective markets, or would they be forced to shut down by the new law.

Additionally, in the event they were forced to cease operations, the firms would seek appropriate financial compensations from some entity or someone. Considering that Adelson is pushing for the ban, companies may seek a severance from him.

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