June 27, 2017

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CPAC Attendees Reject Cronyism

Institute for Liberty Poll Finds CPAC Attendees Rejects Crony Effort to Federalize Gaming Laws

Published Tuesday, February 28, 2017
by Andrew Langer

Institute for Liberty Poll Finds CPAC Attendees Rejects

Crony Effort to Federalize Gaming Laws

A poll commissioned by the Institute for Liberty at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) found that by extraordinarily large numbers, conservative activists broadly reject efforts by Las Vegas casino owner Sheldon Adelson and his allies in Congress to federalize the regulation of online gambling. 

By a 91% to 9% margin, attendees at the largest conservative conference in the world said they oppose attempts by some in Congress to ban state-regulated online gaming. 

By an 88% to 12% margin, attendees also agreed that the legislation known as RAWA (Restoration of America’s Wire Act), the bill that would bar states from legislating the use of online gaming and selling lottery tickets online, is a violation of the Tenth Amendment and an example of crony capitalism.  The bill has also been criticized as a danger to the Second Amendment as it would establish a dangerous precedent against states’ rights that would help those seeking to ban the sale on online ammunition.

The poll was conducted over the course of the four-day conference that was held at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbour, Maryland.

Andrew Langer, the President of the Institute for Liberty, said that the results confirm that conservative activists reject RAWA for what it is – a corporate giveaway and a breach of the Bill of Rights.

“Conservatives see RAWA for what it is – one of the worst forms of crony capitalism in Congress today.  RAWA is nothing short of an effort by one of the richest men in the world to ban a form of competition for his brick and mortar casino empire – and everyone knows it,” Langer said.  “Worse yet, he is even willing to trample on the Constitution to do it.”

RAWA was introduced by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) in the Senate and by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) in the House of Representatives.  The bill has been sold as a means of stopping the proliferation of online gambling, but only targets states like New Jersey and Delaware that have legalized online gaming for their residents.  The legislation also prohibits states like Georgia and Illinois from selling lottery tickets online.

The Institute for Liberty has been a leading critic of the legislation, joining organizations like the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the American Conservative Union in warning legislators about the dangers of the Adelson power grab.  The Institute for Liberty hosted a forum at CPAC educating attendees about the dangers of the legislation.

“The Leadership of both houses of Congress should know that rank and file conservative voters reject the crony RAWA bill and will defend the Constitution from this Vegas-purchased onslaught on liberty,” Langer added.  “We will be vigilant opposing this bill.”

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