Indian Gaming Community Not Excited About USDOJ News

By Maria McCoyGoogle

The U.S. Department of Justices redefinition of the 1961 Federal Wire Act to exclude online gambling has received mixed responses from the Indian gaming community, none on them positive.  Some are upset about the news while some responded apathetically. 

The USDOJ Legal Council’s decision to overturn the Criminal Division’s understanding of the Wire Act was great news for most of the top online casinos.  However, the Indian gaming community, a special interest group that has been receiving special treatment for years in the realm of gambling legislation was never particularly bothered by the Wire Act.  Therefore, the same decision that brought joy to the hearts of so many USA online casinos is bad news for others.  For the Indian gaming community it means more competition and less revenue.

Others in the Indian gaming community don’t believe that this new decision is actually going to have a real impact.  First of all, nothing will happen until states actually begin legalizing and regulating online gambling; the only state that has begun such a process is Nevada.  Furthermore, the novelty of the decision itself could be held in question, for the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act includes a clause allowing for internet gambling within individual states and within tribal territories.

Whether or not the USDOJ’s decision has the power to truly change the situation of online gambling in America is still unclear.  However, the fact that legal online casino gambling is somewhere around the corner is unquestionable.  That said, its eventual impact on Indian casinos will be interesting to see.

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