Online poker players in the United States are anxiously awaiting for the day that their game becomes regulated on home soil. Each Friday in THE FIGHT BluffMagazine.com will bring you all the news from the efforts to get online poker regulated both locally and internationally. This week we highligh a major casino executive possibly changing his mind on Internet gambling, the grassroots effort to overturn Washington state’s law making online gambling a felon, and PokerStars getting licensed in another European country.
Wynn Finding a Win in Online Gambling?
A spokesman for Wynn Resorts CEO Steve Wynn, long an opponent of online gambling, appeared to soften Wynn’s stance on the subject in a statement for an October 3rd article in the New York Times. “Wynn Resorts monitors any legislative activity, federal or state, that pertains to our industry,” the statement said. “We make judgments after such legislation is passed.” The article discussed how casinos and their lobbying group, the American Gaming Association, were warming to the fact that online gambling could be regulated in the United States. In an earlier interview, Wynn stated that it would be impossible to regulate online gambling and that it helps reduce casino attendance, reducing casino profits.
The US House and Senate are currently in recess until after November elections, with the likelihood of legalized and regulated online gambling legislation being passed by the Congress appear slim at best. Hopes in the casino industry currently fall with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, involved in an extremely close contest with Republican Sharron Angle, who could help push such legislation. For an election guide for House and Senate races in your area, be sure to check out the PPA’s Congressional Ratings Guide.
Change of Tactics in Overturning Washington State Online Gambling Ban
Thoughts of petitioning the US Supreme Court to overturn the Washington State Supreme Court ruling upholding a state law making online gambling a class C felony were dismissed by Poker Players Alliance Executive Director John Pappas, suggesting that going through the state legislature would be a more effective way to get the law overturned. Along those lines, a state resident recently started a Facebook group Citizens for the Right to Play Poker in Washington. Over 800 members have joined so far as the group attempts to influence state lawmakers and introduce legislation next year to repeal the law.
PokerStars finds a partner in Belgium
Following the news earlier this month of receiving an operational license in Estonia, PokerStars announced a partnership with Belgium’s Circus Groupe casinos on October 11th to offer online poker under the regulation of the Belgian Gaming Commission. Earlier this year, Belgium announced that they would begin offering licenses to foreign gaming operators in 2011. Expect similar partnerships in the coming months from other major online gambling sites.
“PokerStars and the Circus Groupe are logical partners. Namur Casino has the largest live poker events offering in Belgium. PokerStars.com is the world’s largest poker site and the largest in Belgium as well. In addition, PokerStars organises the largest live poker series, the European Poker Tour. This is also in line with our global strategy to obtain online poker licensing wherever it is available,” said Sander Siezen, Marketing Manager for PokerStars Benelux.
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