August 20, 2019 3 min read


The Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling in Support of DoJ’s Appeal

  • Last week Federal Judge Barbadoro turned down the United States Department of Justice’s revised opinion on the 1961 Wire Act
  • The DoJ ultimately confirms intentions to appeal Judge Barbadoro’s ruling
  • Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling feeling “encouraged” by DoJ’s decision to appeal

Ultimately it goes beyond Court Appeals and comes down to predictions over the matter pointing in the direction of the Supreme Court. Just like Federal Judge Barbadoro said himself.

A Fight against What Has Already Matured

Leading opponent to the US online gambling expansion, The Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling, came out with a statement of support and praise towards the Department of Justice’s decision to appeal against the court decision that turned down their revised stance on the Wire Act. Not to anyone’s surprise.

Parker Mantell, a representative spokesperson for the Coalition said that “American families do not want casinos available on their kids’ mobile devices 24-7, especially now that online casinos are offering cartoon and fairytale-themed games and advertisements for online gaming appearing on websites targeted at children,” pointing out that “The Coalition remains confident that our position is correct legally – and from a policy standpoint.”

Although that may be pointing out someone’s truth – or facts – even for some percentage of US citizens, especially those reluctant to pay any mind to the advancing developments in behavioral studies and the utilization of safety measures for regulated gambling, the argument doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. The micro transactions, which almost all – if not almost every – newly released mobile game offers for various purposes of enhancing the players’ performance and thus overall gaming experience, alone, ought to bring about far more serious concerns for those “American families” Mantell is referring to.

Thus, the problem here is either the already too well established left-right/liberal-conservative stand-off or that of losing sight of the larger picture.

A Brief Guide through the History of Recent Events

In January this year, the US Department of Justice released a revised reading of the 1961 Wire Act through the Office of Legal Counsel. In their revised opinion the DoJ claimed that they step back from their 2011 reading of the, which determined that the ban on communicating bets or wages cross state-borders via the means of telephone wires pertains solely to placing wagers on sports events. Now the DoJ is attempting to enforce a new meaning, which broadens the specter of the betting activities, which fall under the regulations of the Wire Act. To cut to the chase – and as the all too clearly suggestive name of the aforementioned supporting Coalition implies – to ban internet gambling in the United States.

The New Hampshire State Lottery, backed by many other state lotteries and businesses, challenged the attempted enforcement of changing of interpretation, only to come out victorious under the rule of Federal Judge Paul Barbadoro. At this point, the Department has extended the forbearance period of the revision in wait of the Court’s final decision.


Simon is a freelance writer who specializes in gambling news and has been an author in the poker/casino scene for 10+ years. He brings valuable knowledge to the team and a different perspective, especially as a casual casino player.

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