A campaign promise made by almost a year ago by New York Governor Eliot Spitzer has resurfaced.
Last April GamePolitics reported on candidate Spitzer’s plan to legislate sales of violent video games. The former State Attorney General also called for a universal rating system for games, movies and music. At the time, Spitzer said:
Self-regulation doesn’t always work… when self-regulation fails, government must step in… New York State must take matters into its own hands. We should follow the lead of states like California, Illinois and Michigan and pass ‘Safe Games’ legislation…
The (ESRB) does have a rating system… but it’s often ignored. Laws protecting underage kids from harmful products are nothing new… But currently, nothing under New York State law prohibits a fourteen-year old from walking into a video store and buying a game labeled ‘Adult Only’ – a game like ‘Grand Theft Auto…’
Democrats and Republicans both have bills that would address these problems, but they have gone nowhere. It is time to make this a priority.
Now, Spitzer is apparently making good on his promise. As reported by Business Week:
Gov. Eliot Spitzer will take a shot at violent videos and video games as part his remaining 2007 legislative agenda… Spitzer said he will soon provide a bill that would target the ratings of video movies and video games "that are often violent and degrading" and can hurt children who repeatedly use and view them…
The Democrat said his approach would be similar to greater enforcement in recent years to stop the sale of cigarettes to minors.
State Sen. Joseph Bruno, Republican Majority Leader, said that Spitzer should prioritize the state’s economy, but seemed to be on board with the Governor’s position on the video game issue:
It’s certainly going to be one of our priorities. We have bills that address that.
As has been reported by GamePolitics, there are several such bills currently under consideration in the New York legislature.