When the Department of Justice issued its reinterpretation of the Wire Act in December of last year in response to the interest New York and Illinois had in selling lottery tickets via the Internet, the door was opened for Illinois to become the first state to offer any type of web-based, real-money gambling to its residents. Illinois began selling lottery tickets over the Internet earlier this year.
Now, Illinois is beginning to explore other areas of online gambling to increase its revenues. In an amendment to a bill filed by state Senate President John Cullerton, Cullerton suggests that the state should form a “Division of Internet Gaming” as part of its lottery system.
In a letter sent to Illinois’ Governor, Pat Quinn, Cullerton wrote that the Division of Internet Gaming could help Illinois “position itself as a ‘hub’ for multi-state and international iGaming,” and that Illinois could “organize the first major poker pool.”
If the amendment is passed, Illinois may be able to add other forms of Internet gambling, including online poker, to its lottery system as early as next year.