RAWA: One Casino Billionaire’s Quest to Kill Internet Gambling

The Daily Caller covers the Restoration of America’s Wire Act and cites a paper written by Michelle Minton on the subject.

Enter the world of Sheldon Adelson, a billionaire casino mogul and Republican donor with a net worth of $34.8 billion. From the Las Vegas Sands of Nevada, to the Venetian Macao of Macua, Adelson’s casinos are renowned the world over. However, innovation in the form of online gambling represents a clear and existential threat to this gaming empire.

Will congressional Republicans stoop to blatant cronyism to preserve it?

Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) is a piece of legislation that would extend the Federal Wire Act of 1961 to impose a federal ban on online gambling. Simultaneously, the bill would grant online activities like fantasy sports an exemption. Darryl Nirenberg, the author of RAWA, is a registered lobbyist for Adelson’s company.

In the years since its inception, RAWA has never advanced any further than receiving a few hearings. Currently, RAWA is stopped in Congress, but some fear that an amendment will be offered to the State Justice Commerce Appropriations bill in committee as soon as next week.

In any case, usage of the term “restoration” in the legislation’s title is a misnomer, considering the Federal Wire Act of 1961 did not apply to the use of the Internet as a wagering medium. Michelle Minton, a fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, wrote a paper in 2014, detailing the original intent of the act, which was to combat the source of organized crime’s revenue—namely bookkeeping on horseracing and sports gambling, utilizing the telephone and telegraph systems.

Read the full article at The Daily Caller.