The Federal Government’s Role in Regulating Online Gambling


Internet-based gambling is a growing phenomenon. It offers greater variety of betting products than offline gambling. Moreover, it is faster and easier to participate. While some countries restrict the use of the internet for gambling, there are numerous jurisdictions which allow online wagering.

Although many people perceive gambling as an enjoyable hobby, others see it as a threat to their health. In some states, it is illegal to gamble without a license. However, in other states, the law allows gambling.

Gambling involves placing a wager on something of value in a random event. There are three important elements that make up gambling: a prize, a risk, and consideration.

While the United States has a long history of regulating gambling, the federal government does not currently have the authority to regulate the Internet. This makes it a difficult task for states to implement their own rules. Despite this, the number of jurisdictions that allow gambling on the Internet continues to grow.

The federal government’s power to regulate gambling lies in the Commerce Clause. Congress has used this power to regulate Native American territories and to prohibit unauthorized transportation of lottery tickets between states. But federal preemption has halted state attempts to regulate Indian reservations within state borders.

In April 2007, Rep. Barney Frank introduced a bill to the House of Representatives that would regulate online gambling. In the Senate, Senators Bob Goodlatte and Jon Kyl introduced similar bills.

The Fifth Circuit disagreed with the Department of Justice, which announced that all forms of Internet gambling were illegal. Many critics argue that this move has no legal basis.

Posted in: Gambling