Blumenauer makes 41 for IGREA

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The House Judiciary Committee hearing about online gambling may have swayed at least one congressman in favor of legalizing the industry. On Thursday, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) signed on as a co-sponsor of the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act.

The IGREA was introduced by Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) in April and seeks to legalize, license and regulate online gambling in the United States.

At this time, the government points to legislation such as the Wire Act of 1961 as making online gambling illegal. More recently, the government passed into law in 2006 the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act which restricts financial transactions meant for gambling online.

Blumenauer was actually among the representatives who voted to approve the UIGEA in 2006. It appears he's now switching his opinion and supporting the new legislation that would legalize Internet gambling such as online poker and online casinos.

The other co-sponsors for the IGREA are:

  • Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii)
  • Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.)
  • Joe Baca (D-Calif.)
  • Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.)
  • Howard Berman (D-Calif.)
  • Michael Capuano (D-Mass.)
  • Russ Carnahan (D-Mo.)
  • Julia Carson (D-Ind.)
  • William lacy Clay (D-Mo.)
  • Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.)
  • Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.)
  • William Delahunt (D-Mass.)
  • Bob Filner (D-Calif.)
  • Vito Fossella (R-N.Y.)
  • Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.)
  • Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.)
  • Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.)
  • Michael Honda (D-Calif.)
  • Steve Israel (D-N.Y.)
  • Peter King (R-N.Y.)
  • Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.)
  • Jim McDermott (D-Wash.)
  • James McGovern (D-Mass.)
  • Charlie Melancon (D-La.)
  • James Moran (D-Va.)
  • Ron Paul (R-Texas)
  • Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.)
  • Ciro Rodriguez (D-Texas)
  • Steven Rothman (D-N.J.)
  • Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.)
  • Adam Schiff (D-Calif.)
  • Robert Scott (D-Va.)
  • Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.)
  • Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.)
  • Melvin Watt (D-N.C.)
  • Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.)
  • Robert Wexler (D-Fla.)
  • Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.)
  • Albert Wynn (D-Md.)
  • Don Young (R-Alaska)

If you don't see your own representative on the list, there are ways to contact your congressman or congresswoman and let them know your thoughts on legalizing online gambling. The Poker Players Alliance offers several ways to contact your representative at its Web site.

Other legislation in the works dealing with online gambling includes a bill from Robert Wexler that seeks to exclude poker from the current laws because it's a game of skill. Shelley Berkley also proposed a bill that will have a survey done about online gambling to determine what course of action on the issue is best for the nation.

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