Update: House hearing on online gambling postponed

One bill slated for discussion is Frank's "Reasonable Prudence in Regulation Act," which would delay that fast-approaching, June 1 deadline for another year. The suspension would then give lawmakers time to debate alternatives to UIGEA, which Frank first targeted for repeal in May 2009.

A second bill, the "Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act," would overturn UIGEA entirely and permit domestic gambling, provided that companies adhere to strict licensing rules. The legislation is an attempt to rein in an industry that has responded to federal restrictions by relocating overseas, the congressman has previously emphasized.

Both efforts would prove to be hard sells if they reached floor debate, especially in the Senate. But online gambling associations still quickly praised Frank's effort to reignite discussion on the practice.

“This hearing will provide further evidence that UIGEA is a poorly-crafted law that simply does not work," Michael Waxman, the spokesman for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative, before the hearing was postponed.

“We expect this hearing to provide further impetus for the House Financial Services Committee and Congress to address this issue and move forward Chairman Frank’s regulatory bill.”

(This post was updated at 3:36 p.m. to reflect the postponed hearing)