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Don't Ask Don't Tell Repeal Paves Way For Online Gambling Laws

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US lawmakers took the first step on Saturday towards giving all Americans the same rights and freedoms when the Senate voted to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Online poker players are hoping this was the first step towards full freedom, and that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act repeal may be next.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell is a law that was created to keep openly gay Americans from serving in the military. Thousands of Americans have been discharged because of the law, and the Senate finally voted to overturn the ill-advised law, just a couple of weeks before Conservatives took control of the House.

The Don't Ask, Don't Tell law is one that Democrats have been pushing hard to repeal for several years. Another of those ill-advised laws on the radar for Liberals is the UIGEA. In recent weeks, Senator Harry Reid has proposed an online poker bill, but that legislation alone would not have overturned the UIGEA.

Representative Barney Frank has come the closest to having the 2006 law reversed, but his efforts have fallen short. Frank pushed a bill through the House Financial Services Committee, but the legislation never made it to the House floor. With new leadership taking control of the House in January, Frank's efforts in the near future will likely fail.

Much like with Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Conservatives have alienated an entire segment of the US population with the UIGEA. Online gambling prohibition is affecting millions of online poker players every day, and much like the gay community, for many years their voices have not been heard by members of Congress.

It is unlikely that online gambling prohibition will be discussed in the closing days of the lame-duck session. For online poker players, however, they can take comfort in the Don't Ask, Don't Tell repeal.

The repeal shows that everything is worth the wait, as millions of gay and lesbians exhibited Saturday through tears of joy. It may take a little longer, but those tears of joy will eventually come for the millions of online gamblers in this country as well.

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