On October 13, 2006, President Bush signed legislation enacting the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). This law prohibits the use of any bank instrument - such as a credit card, check, or electronic funds transfer - from being used for illegal online gambling. As an author of the law, I was proud that Congress and the President agreed to take this important enforcement step to help curb what has always been an illegal activity.
My concern has always been for our youth and families. The very real victims of illegal Internet gambling are our young people. They can't go in a casino and bet legally but the Internet has brought the casino to the computers in their bedrooms and dorm rooms. It's a temptation that many have fallen prey to and studies have shown that the earlier one begins gambling, the more likely it is he or she will become a compulsive problem gambler.
Strong support for the law has come from state attorneys general, the American Psychiatritc Association, numerous faith-based organizations, major professional sports organizations, and the NCAA among other groups.