Internet poker battle waged in Sacramento

A group of casino operators has taken to radio and television with ads urging state lawmakers to legalize Internet poker in California, prompting opponents to step up pressure for legislators to table the proposal for the year.

The ads by the California Online Poker Assn. say legalizing web-based poker could help the state avoid deep budget cuts. The spots started airing in the Sacramento area this week. Legislators are less than a month away from the deadline to act on bills this year.

“Online poker will provide California with $250 million dollars immediately and billions more in the future,’’ said Ryan Hightower, a spokesman for the association.

The group includes Commerce Casino, Bicycle Club, Hollywood Park Casino and operators of American Indian gaming facilities, including the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.

Other American Indian tribes have joined the California Tribal Business Alliance, which Tuesday sent a letter to legislators asking them to drop two pending pieces of legislation for the year.

The alliance includes the Pala Band of Mission Indians, which operates a casino near Temecula. The alliance argues that Internet poker could take customers away from brick-and-mortar casinos.

"There are numerous stakeholders who stand to be irreparably harmed should legislation be 'ram-rodded' through this legislative year, and this surely would be a disservice to all Californians, tribal and nontribal alike," Robert H. Smith, chairman of the alliance, wrote in the letter to lawmakers.


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PF_pitboss Platinum 3
2498d ago

There is definitely a battle going on between the state and federal level on who should push forward with legislation. Sen. Harry Reid and one other prominent senator had sent a letter to the Attorney General trying to warn states not to proceed with legislating online poker until it is done at the federal level.

My response is then, stop stalling and get it done or you can't complain about states acting in the absence of progress. Everyone needs more tax revenue right now.

Posted by mothersquatch on 08/17/2011 5:08PM [ Reply ]

Well isn't this how the Feds handle things, sorta like the border issue, wait till the states get miffed then pass some useless piece of legislation then tell them the problem is solved...

motriuc Silver 1
2498d ago

hmm.every country make law for poker...and just my country kill poker...omg

axistilt23 Silver 2
2492d ago

California and a bunch of other states need the money so go for it. As far as "brick-and-mortar" casinos all I can say is adapt. This is capitalism, if your product is no longer favorable change it or go out of business. Competition, survival of the fittest. I still can't see casinos being obsolete, because of games like craps, roulette and black-jack where you play against the house and not just another person.

motriuc Silver 1
2491d ago

why casino operators wants to leg net poker?in my country is vcv