New York State Gaming Committee Leaders to Congressional Delegation: Federal Ban on Online Gaming is Contrary to the Broad Interests of New York State

June 17, 2015

Kristen Hawn, 202-320-3792/

Alison Siciliano, 202-436-5565/

Pressure mounts on NY Congressional Delegation to Oppose Federal Prohibition of Online Gaming 

(Washington, DC) – Today, New York State Senator Joseph Addabbo, a supporter of online gaming and the ranking minority member of the NYS Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering and Assemblyman Gary Pretlow and other members of the NYS Assembly Committee on Racing and Wagering sent letters urging the New York Congressional Delegation to oppose the “Restoration of America’s Wire Act” (RAWA). Addabbo, Pretlow, Markey, Garbarino, Goldfeder, and Solanges join a growing coalition of state legislators mounting pressure on the federal delegation to keep RAWA from usurping New York’s ability to determine which forms of gaming should be authorized within the state. Just last month, the State Independent Democratic Caucus penned a letter asking the delegation not to trample on states’ rights or shut the door on future economic growth by supporting RAWA.

In the most recent letters from committee leadership in both chambers, members urged the delegation not to foreclose on the future potential of Internet sales for the New York lottery or preemptively keep the state legislature from accessing new tax revenue and creating new employment opportunities. New York legislators also argued that a federal prohibition of online gaming would only serve to expand the black market that already exists for online gaming sites, noting “a prohibitionist approach…exposes children and others to gambling behind a curtain with no regulation or rules to protect consumers and the vulnerable.”

The legislators call on the delegation to oppose the legislation as “inimical to the broader interests of New York, which recognizes the benefits of the Internet for all industries and businesses in the state.”

You can read Senator Addabo’s full letter here, and the Assembly letter here.

RAWA was introduced by US Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and has drawn wide-ranging opposition from law enforcement, states rights supporters and Internet safety advocates across the country. For more information on opposition to RAWA, you can visit the Coalition for Consumer and Online Protection’s website at