Online Gambling Bill Fails in Mississippi

An attempt to regulate online gaming in the state of Mississippi died in committee last week. The Mississippi Lawful Internet Gaming Act of 2012 (HB 1373) was introduced last month by state representative Bobby Moak (D) but did not make it past the House Ways and Means Committee.

The bill was in response to a reversal of opinion regarding the Wire Act by the US Department of Justice (DOJ). In late December, the DOJ released a revised opinion that the Wire Act only pertained to sporting events and did not prohibit other forms of internet gambling.

As a result, Moak sought to leverage the opportunity to create additional revenue for the state and, in the process, protect its residents from unregulated offshore operators. Had it passed, the law would have taken effect July 1, 2012.

At this time it is unclear whether Moak will seek to re-introduce the legislation at a later date.