Legislation | Regulation
Senate Indian Affairs Committee takes up Internet gaming

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee held a hearing on Thursday to discuss Internet gaming.

Last year, the Department of Justice released an opinion that appeared to clear the way for states to offer all forms of gaming online, with the exception of sports betting. If that's the case, then tribes would entitled to the same types of gaming.

But Seneca Nation President Robert Odawi Porter said the state of New York is already trying to go online without respecting tribal rights. He also said big gaming interests from Nevada and New Jersey also want to influence Congress to pass Internet legislation that doesn't take tribes into account.

"Our treaty rights to conduct commerce -- from our land, on our own terms, and without restraint by any outside power -- must be respected and honored. That must apply to both over-the-counter trade and internet commerce like internet gaming," Porter said in his written testimony.

Other witnesses said Congress should ensure that tribes are protected. Without federal regulation of Internet gaming, states could erode the gains of the $26 billion Indian gaming industry, they testified.

Get the Story:
Expansion of Net Gambling Worries Indian Tribes (The National Journal 2/9)
Gambling's move online likely to cost tribes (The Las Vegas Review-Journal 2/9)
Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Ponders Internet Gaming in Wake of DOJ Opinion (Card Player 2/9)
Dean: Regulate Online Gambling (The Albuquerque Journal 2/10)

Committee Notice:
OVERSIGHT HEARING on the U.S. Department of Justice Opinion on Internet Gaming: What's at Stake for Tribes (February 9, 2012)

Related Stories:
Witness list for SCIA hearing on Internet gaming and tribes (2/9)