'Lindsey Graham Is Sheldon Adelson's Key Ally in Bid to Ban Online Gambling'

Washington Post reporter writes that the senator hopes supporting the casino magnate's efforts will earn millions of dollars for his presidential campaign.

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Las Vegas Sands Corporation Chairman and Chief Executive Sheldon Adelson at a news conference in Tokyo, February 24, 2014.Credit: Reuters

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham is one of Sheldon Adelson's "key allies" in the Senate, and will support his effort to ban online gambling in the hopes of receiving a multi-million dollar boost to his presidential campaign. That according to the Washington Post's Amber Phillips.

In a blog post published Monday, the Washington D.C. reporter writes that the casino magnate fears an expansion of the gambling market to the Internet will eat into his profits, and is thus driving legislative efforts to ban online poker and slot machines.

"Because politics is increasingly dependent on outside money," and because the South Carolina Republican "needs help from some very powerful people to reach his ultimate goal" of winning the 2016 presidential election, "Adelson has a real chance to win this fight," writes Phillips.

In March 2014, Graham introduced a bill to ban online gambling across all American states, writes Phillips, and it, together with a related one in the House of Representatives, was almost included in a catch-all budget package in December when the 113th Congress closed down. The South Carolina Republican has publicly vowed to reintroduce the motion to this Congress, too, she writes.

Phillips reminds readers that Adelson has proven his ability to "be a major player in the presidential field," by injecting a lifeline of $15 million into former House Speaker Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign in 2012. She also notes that Adelson reportedly held a fundraiser for Graham's political action committee while Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed Congress in March.

"Graham is well aware of all of this," she writes, adding: "Anyone wanting to know whether Graham has a chance at the office he seeks should keep their eyes on this one, niche piece of legislation."