Nevada AG Laxalt Now In Favor Of Federal iGambling BanNovember 27, 2015 5:10 pm
Many of Nevada’s senior politicians, as well as members of the gaming community, received a shock while watching Ralston Live on Vegas PBS this week, after the state’s Attorney General Adam Laxalt announced he was now in favor of a federal ban on internet gambling. This was the first time Laxalt had openly expressed his support of the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA), and in the meantime he said he also intends to sign a letter sent to state attorney generals trying to drum up support for RAWA in advance of the bill’s hearing in the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee on December 9th.
In his TV interview with veteran reporter Jon Ralston, the Nevada Attorney General criticized former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, whose September 2011 opinion on the Wire Act helped bring about regulated online gambling in the U.S. Laxalt said he now hopes to see the law changed “back to what the status quo was of Congress past”.
Needless to say, Adam Laxalt endorsing a federal ban caused an immediate backlash from industry operators, and senior politicians, which is hardly unexpected seeing Nevada is the country’s biggest gambling market, and was the first state to regulate online poker back in 2013. State Governor Brian Sandoval, for instance, warned that Nevada had to change with the times in order to keep its gaming industry attractive and competitive, while Nevada Gaming Control Board Chairman A.G. Burnett expressed concern that RAWA passing would once again drive Americans into the arms of unlicensed offshore operators. Likewise, MGM CEO Jim Murren attacked Adam Laxalt’s shortsighted stance on the issue stating:
“I very much hope our attorney general doesn’t sign on to that because that literally would be saying I am against the gaming industry in Nevada, I’m against jobs, I’m against social media, I’m against IGT [slots maker], I’m against the largest employer in the state.”