Reb. Spencer Bacchus (R-Ala.) is getting quite a bit of flack right now for making a wildly inaccurate statement during the debate in the House Financial Services Committee's markup of a bill that would force the Treasury Department to refrain from enforcing the UIGEA.

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Speaking against the bill, Alabama Rep. Spencer Bachus, the committee's ranking Republican, explained that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), the law that requires the regulations, is all about saving the youth of America from a potentially lethal addiction. "McGill University found that one-third of college students who gamble on the Internet ultimately attempted suicide," he averred. He added, "That is why the rate of suicide on our college campuses has doubled in the past 10 years."
However, McGill gambling and addiction researcher Jeffrey L. Derevensky refutes that claim.

This assertion, which is reportedly based upon our empirical research, is not predicated upon any factual evidence. None of the studies conducted with adolescents or college students, to the best of my knowledge, have looked at a connection between Internet wagering and suicide attempts.
Bacchus recently put out a press release that stated that one third of college students that are problem gamblers attempt suicide, not one-third of all college online gamblers. Pretty big difference there.

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