US financial crisis and election has distracted lawmakers

Barney Frank's HR6870 Payment Service Protection Act will probably not be voted on this congressional session despite its successful 30 -19 vote in the House Financial Services Committee on September 16 (see previous InfoPowa reports).

Congressional sources this week said that politicians and the legislative system were preoccupied with electoral issues and the financial crisis currently facing both America and the international community which makes a debate and vote on the contentious 6870 unlikely.

Frank's proposal is key to establishing an official government definition of what constitutes 'illegal online gambling', something which federal drafters have been struggling to accomplish in the face of growing criticism from the financial industry in the United States, which is charged with enforcing the controversial Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act 2006. This Act was designed to disrupt US financial transactions with online gambling companies and its inequities, lack of precision and the burden it places on financial institutions has been widely criticised.

It was hoped that 6870 would be voted on this week in the House of Representatives, but this now seems unlikely, and with the calendar for this session of Congress rapidly drawing in, it appears that the bill will now have to wait for a new session next year, with a new Administration in place.

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