January 16, 2019

Graham Statement on Justice Department’s Restoration of Wire Act

WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made this statement on the Department of Justice (DOJ) issuing an opinion restoring the long-standing interpretation of the Wire Act. DOJ’s opinion reverses the Obama Administration’s abrupt decision to expand online gambling.

I welcome the decision by the Department of Justice to reverse a misguided decision by the Obama Administration,” Graham said.  “Restoring the original interpretation of the Wire Act takes great strides to protect children and society’s most vulnerable.  It will also be a blow to criminal elements that tried to take advantage of the failed Obama policy.”

Background on the history of the Wire Act:

 

  • On December 23, 2011, the Obama-era DOJ published an opinion that reversed the long-standing interpretation that the Wire Act banned all forms of Internet gambling.  DOJ found that the Wire Act only banned online sports betting.

 

  • After the 2011 decision, Senators Graham and Dianne Feinstein (D-California) led the Congressional response to the Obama-era DOJ by introducing the Restoration of America’s Wire Act.

 

  • DOJ reversed the 2011 decision, thereby restoring the Wire Act to its original intent by banning online gambling.