Citizens Against Expanded Gambling host forums on the Danger of Legalizing Internet Gambling in Wisconsin

MADISON – Citizens Against Expanded Gambling and Wisconsin Family Council are sponsoring educational forums across Wisconsin to highlight the dangers of legalizing Daily Fantasy Sports.  The first two forums will be held at the Charcoal Grill in Burlington, WI on Tuesday, January 24 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, and the Sheboygan Pizza Ranch on February 2 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.

Assembly Bill 800 from was introduced in the State Affairs committee on January 25, 2016. A hearing was scheduled on January 27, just two days later.  This bill would define Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) as a game of skill rather than a game of chance. A bill with similar language is expected to be introduced in the upcoming months.

Legalizing DFS would make a virtual casino out of every smart phone and Internet device, representing the largest expansion of gambling in Wisconsin history. Citizens Against Expanded Gambling and Wisconsin Family Council led the effort to defeat the bill in committee.

“We want to make sure Wisconsin citizens are aware of this legislation and have the opportunity to discover both sides of the issue.  The Wisconsin State Constitution prohibits internet gambling.  The only way around a constitutional amendment is to dishonestly redefine DFS as a game of skill,’ said Lorri Pickens, a representative for Citizens Against Expanded Gambling.

Over the course of the past year, several experts as well as state attorneys general from across the country have defined DFS as gambling.  Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan deemed that under state law, DFS is gambling. She noted, “Participants (in the online fantasy leagues) must pay an entry fee or buy-in amount in order to win a prize. Consequently, the act of playing daily fantasy sports contests in Illinois constitutes illegal gambling.”

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