Casino Mogul Sheldon Adelson Opposes Online PokerMarch 5, 2012 2:29 pm
In 2011, Sheldon Gary Adelson was listed in Forbes as the world’s 16th wealthiest man with $21.5 billion in wealth.
Sheldon Adelson is also CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, and despite making a fortune from running casinos, the 78 year-old says he is vehemently opposed to the legalisation of online gaming.
Such is the billionaire’s opposition to online gambling that the Las Vegas Sands has resisted arranging potential partnerships with online companies in case of regulation, unlike other Las Vegas Strip casinos. One of the reasons cited for his opposition to online gaming is that he doesn’t believe the technology exists to prevent underage players from gambling, prompting one online commenter to cynically write:
“It’s all about the children, says the tycoon.”
The American casino and hotel magnate is a staunch conservative and reputedly said would donate $100 million to put a Republican in the White House. However, Sheldon was once a Democrat, and switched parties after his wealth increased and he encountered increasing disputes with labor unions at his Las Vegas properties.
Commenting on Sheldon Adelson’s vocal opposition to online gambling, Lawyer Nelson Rose, who testified in front of Congress on the subject, said:
“Casino insiders know Adelson’s politics. He is so conservative and such an avid Republican that he blames President Obama for the Las Vegas recession, which started under President Bush. But now everyone knows that he supports Newt Gingrich, which means his political opinions are irrelevant.”
Despite his opposition, Nevada regulators have already prepared ground rules to become the USA’s first intrastate online poker operator, while California, Iowa, New Jersey and Mississippi are also looking seriously into the matter.
Dr. David Schwartz from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, further added that if someone was able to “demonstrate age verification to Adelson’s satisfaction” then he may become a supporter of online gambling, too.