States see dollar signs and want online gambling legalized

States see dollar signs and want online gambling legalized

With the Justice Department's decision to reevaluate the Wire Act almost a month old, more states across America continue to debate whether legalizing online gambling can make a difference for their state's economy, The New York Times reports.

Nevada and the District of Columbia have already taken steps to be able to allow online poker within their boarders and other states like New Jersey, Iowa, Massachusetts and California seem to be following suit.

Although many state legislators believe that allowing online slot machines and table games will greatly increase state revenue, others aren't as sure that the profit is worth the aggravation.

The American Gaming Association estimates that legalizing online poker will bring in $2 billion a year in tax revenues, which is a fraction of what states rake in from in-state lottery.

However big or small the actual gain is for each state, many like California see the number as big enough to pursue.

"Two hundred and fifty million dollars [the estimated revenue California will make if online poker is legalized] buys you a lot of teachers," State Senator Lou Correa, told the publication. "When we’re cutting social services to the poorest in our state, it buys you a lot of social services."

Do you think states are getting too excited by the dollar signs without thinking about what legalizing online gambling will do or do you think it's about time the U.S. allowed the activity?

Published on 25 January 2012