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Sheldon Adelson finds new ally in fight against online gambling

TAGs: lindsey graham, Online Gambling, sheldon adelson

sheldon-adelson-congressSheldon Adelson’s quest to ban online gambling received a juiced up shot in the arm now that Sen. Lindsey Graham has essentially made it clear that he’s got his the casino mogul’s back on the issue.

The Republican senator from South Carolina is expected to introduce a bill to ban online gambling, a move that Adelson continues to champion to kingdom come. The introduction of the bill is expected to happen within the week, although no specific timetable has been set on when it’s going to happen.

Multiple reports did indicate that draft language of the bill has been floating around Capitol Hill, calling for a total blanket ban of online gambling with the exception of fantasy sports and horse racing. And while there has been no direct indication that Adelson had hand in Graham’s decision to file the bill, it’s worth noting that the long-time Republican backer and his wife gave campaign contributions to Graham last year.

But even if both men haven’t publicly come out as BFFs, news of Graham taking up Adelson’s cause to Capitol Hill should ring music to the ears of the Las Vegas Sands chairman. At least that’s the sentiment being thrown around by the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling, which incidentally, is also being backed by Adelson. “We support and applaud all efforts to restore the long-standing interpretation that the Wire Act prohibits Internet gambling,” the coalition said. “It’s common sense that putting a virtual casino in the pocket of every American with a phone is bad public policy.”

With all that happening regarding this renewed push to ban online gambling, another bit of news involving Adelson’s push to ban online gambling was his decision to go against his own party by bringing in former Democrat senator Blanche Lincoln into his side to act as a lobbyist for his campaign against online gambling. According to a report from Roll Call, Adelson hired Lincon’s government consulting firm, Lincoln Policy Group, to essentially sing the praises of Las Vegas Sands and lobby for the company any chance she gets.

Lincoln doesn’t hold public office anymore, losing out to Sen. John Boozman in 2010 after serving as a Democrat senator from 1999-2010. Still, the woman and her consulting company remain influential voices in Capitol Hill and this move by Adelson to bring her into his anti-online gambling camp is just the latest example of the Sands chairman’s promise to fight the proliferation of gambling on the Internet.

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