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Jon Kyl Blockade in Senate Blamed on Internet Gambling

Written by:
Patrick Flanigan
Published on:
Jan/20/2010
Jon Kyl

Senator Jon Kyl is standing in the way of appointing a key nominee to the Treasury Department.  Many observers believe Kyl is "throwing a tantrum" to protest the Treasury Department's postponement of online gambling prohibition

Poker New writes:

These nominees were appointed by President Obama to fill key posts involved in tax policy and international finance. The Senate would overwhelmingly approve their nominations only Kyl is preventing the vote from taking place. Kyl, the Senate Minority Whip, is the second-ranking Republican in a Senate controlled by the Democrats.

Kyl was a chief architect of the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA), passed in October 2006 as a means of circumventing some forms of online gambling activity via the banks.  But Kyl's co-authored bill was chock full of "special favors".  The horse racing industry, NFL (fantasy sports) and state lotteries were all exempt.  Banking institutions expressed concern that they could not differentiate between the so-called "good" forms of online gambling (presumably those listed above) and the "bad" (online poker, sports betting and casinos).   The banks claimed this was an unfunded mandate and promised to prevent all forms of suspected Internet gambling transactions, horse racing included.  The resulting impact:  customers could no longer purchase state lottery tickets in some locales using their bank-issued credit cards. 

"I don't know if anyone would agree with holding up critical nominees in a time of economic crisis because of a gambling bill," said John Pappas, executive director of the Poker Players Alliance. "Kyl is opening himself up to a lot of criticism."

Assuming that Kyl backs down before this gets ugly, the real question is whether or not Geithner will consider this move when weighing whether or not to grant another delay as the June 1 deadline approaches, Poker News wondered.

"We'll see in June if this was a desperate ploy by Kyl or an ingenious maneuver."

Patrick Flanigan, Gambling911.com        

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