Gambling mogul and casino billionaire, Sheldon Adelson has been called out for his claims about the dangers of online gambling. Tim James has posted a teaser for episode 1 of his new TheTimJamesShow.com featuring a Bloomberg interview with Adelson highlighting his stated concerns of underage gambling, comparisons to prostitution and drug addiction among others.
James runs an undercover, hidden camera operation with two nineteen-year-olds who were able to gamble in Adelson’s Venetian and Palazzo casinos in Las Vegas – one with fake ID and the other with no identification card at all. Both were able to play various machines and table games, deposit and cash out, and both were seated and played poker. Both drank alcohol as well. Neither of the teens were able to sign up to play online poker.
At one point in the interview Adelson alludes to “sins” such as drug addiction and prostitution and seems to compare them to online gambling saying, “everything that can be controlled should be controlled.”
James’ next segment shows him go into a bar at the Palazzo and solicit a prostitute on his first attempt. He notes, “I’m pretty sure that at no online gaming sites a prostitute can be obtained.”
He concludes with a statement that all attempts for the teenagers to gamble at the casinos were successful and that all of Adelson’s argument for why he is doing what he is doing are, “patently incorrect.” Noting that “all of the things” Adelson claims he is trying to protect people from actually go on in his land casinos; under-aged gambling, drinking, and prostitution. He reiterates that both of [his] under-aged gamblers tried to sign up to play online poker and failed.
Sheldon Adelson is a heavy donor to Republican presidential candidates and formed the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG) in January of 2014. Soon after forming, the group was able to get a good number of state Attorneys General to sign a letter to congressional leaders as well as House and Senate Judiciary panel members urging them to “keep” online gambling illegal.
Chief CSIG lobbyist, Andy Abboud told Ralston Reports in January 2014 that, “We are prepared to mount full campaigns in every state where a bill is introduced to legalize any form of online gaming,” The lobbyist said. “We will also be doing education in all states to prevent the introduction of any bills.” He added, “We are going to make it ‘the plague.’”
John Pappas, Executive Director of the Poker Players Alliance told politico in February 2014, “The concern is that a lot of money can buy you traction, and Adelson has a lot of money,” Pappas said. “They are trying to deliver a message that misrepresents the issue, and for those of us who have been following this issue for a long time, we see through the blatant hypocrisy and misrepresentation. The average American may not be familiar with this issue at all and can be taken by some of the PR push that they are making.”