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The House Financial Services Committee last week rejected a bill that would delay a proposed regulation from the Federal Reserve Board and the U.S. Treasury Department that would ban Internet gambling, according to the American Banker, a CardLine sister publication. The bill would have required the Fed and Treasury Department to withdraw their proposal until Congress could define what constitutes unlawful Internet gambling. The committee rejected the measure despite strong support from Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., who argued there was no way to limit online gambling without defining it first. "This is really putting the cart before the horse," he said. "We are telling regulators to come up with regulations before we define what it is the regulations are supposed to accomplish, and we put the financial system at risk." President Bush in October 2006 signed legislation designed to force banks to block payments to online gambling Web sites. The Fed and Treasury Department were supposed to implement regulations to enforce the law nine months later, but they have issued only a proposal, citing the difficulty of finalizing regulations for a vaguely defined activity.

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