Online Gaming Law Challenged in Court

Many states have passed laws in an attempt to regulate online gambling. The State of Washington is no exception. Last year saw an online gambling law passed establishing it to be a class c felony to play in that venue. Attorney Lee Rousso is seeking to have SB 6613 over turned. He sites the bills as unconstitutional, and should be overthrown as such.

Rouso’s lawsuit asserts that the Washington law is in direct violation of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause. He also notes that the only benefactors of this law are the traditional casinos already established in the state. Also released with the accompanying lawsuit was this statement.

“Most state attempts to regulate the internet run afoul of the Commerce Clause and Washington’s law, which was passed to protect the state’s brick and mortar casinos from otherwise legal out-of-state competition, should be no exception.”

Lee Rousso is the Washington State representative of the Poker Players Alliance, and was quoted by a Seattle newspaper as believing that his challenge to the law, should be the only challenge needed. “I think my chances are darn good,” said Russo to another reporter.

In his lawsuit Rousso specifically lists 7 items in the Washington State law that are unconstitutional. He also notes that the author of the original bill, State Senator Margarita Prentice, received financial support from the Washington casinos, and alleges that the ‘established’ casinos “were the intended and/or actual beneficiaries of SB 6613”

Should the bill pass, it will prevent any form of Internet poker being established as a felony, having long reaching implications in a person’s life.

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