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Monday, September 19, 2005

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WASHINGTON, Sept 15 (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate on Thursday turned aside an attempt to restrict Internet gambling in a procedural move, but Sen. Jon Kyl vowed he would try again and said he expected the legislation would become law eventually.

The Arizona Republican tried to attach language restricting Internet gambling to an annual spending bill that must be passed this year, but an unnamed Democrat objected to attaching an unrelated matter to the spending measure under consideration.

Kyl said his legislation would require banks and credit card companies to block payments to online Internet gambling sites. He said some firms were already voluntarily blocking money transfers.

"We will proceed with this, it will become law at some point at some time," the Arizona Republican said on the Senate floor. "There should be no reason why we can't move forward on this."

Sen. Barbara Mikulski, a Maryland Democrat, said that a member of her party had objected to attaching Kyl's language to the spending bill but she was not sure who. Kyl urged the lawmaker to come forward so the concerns could be addressed.

The U.S. Justice Department has said the laws that prohibit interstate gambling apply to the Internet. But Americans have turned to offshore gambling Internet sites as an alternative.

The Senate and U.S. House of Representatives have passed similar legislation in the past but have been unable to reach agreement on a single, identical bill, Kyl said.