Harry Reid’s casino backed poker bill (or threat)

by PokerAnon ~ December 10th, 2010. Filed under: Gambling, Poker and life.

Everyone in the online poker world should be worried about this.

Senator Harry Reid is trying to slip a bill though before the end of December. On first glance it might appear to support online poker in the US.

But Reid is supported by the casinos, and the bill that he’s proposing has a 15 month moratorium on online poker before allowing online poker to become legal in the US. That 15 month moratorium means that any existing poker site, including PokerStars and Full Tilt, the two biggest sites, has to stop all poker for US customers for that 15 month period. If they do not, then they become ineligible to apply to have US players after the moratorium period has ended.

In other words, the casinos want in on online poker. They want to force the existing online poker sites to get out of the market until they, the casinos, have time to prepare to enter the market.

It’s expected that if the bill went through, PokerStars and Full Tilt would choose to comply in hopes of retaking the market when the 15 months are up. Washington State residents have already had a taste of that.

This is bad for all online players on these big sites because a huge chunk of their customer base will disappear, meaning fewer cash tables running, smaller tournaments with smaller payouts, and longer waits for sit and goes to fill up.

Likely options during this period are Bodog and Absolute/Ultimate Bet. Bodog is not likely to care because they won’t be allowed to apply after the moratorium because they offers all kinds of sports betting.

Latest word seems that Reid thinks that it’s unlikely that the bill will pass. It was proposed to start January 1, 2011, so if we survive until then, hopefully we can avoid this entirely.

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1 Response to Harry Reid’s casino backed poker bill (or threat)

  1. Alice

    Yay for a good score. And I think you’re right to not chop it up. In addition to cvaring that first place money, you also need to get some final table experience don’t you? So chopping it with 5 or 6 players left doesn’t seem like the right move.

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