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Nevada is Pushing for Online Poker

These days I keep reading of more and more states in the US hoping to introduce a legal and regulated online gambling system. I’ve been keeping up to date with the news coming out of New Jersey, which saw its proposed bill vetoed at the very last moment by Governor Chris Christie, and will now probably have to take the idea to the state’s residents to see online gambling introduced on an intrastate level.

This week, I learned that Nevada has joined New Jersey, California, Iowa and Florida on their quest for legal online gambling. The difference between the proposed bills in the other states and the one being pushed by Nevada is that sports betting is specifically made illegal in the Nevada bill. AB258, instead, relates to online poker only and is being pushed, according to the Wall Street Journal, by Poker Stars under its business name Rational Entertainment Enterprises Ltd, based on the isle of Malta.

What makes this story interesting is that because Poker Stars is the group that is lobbying for AB 258, the wording of the bill makes sure that online poker operators such as Full Tilt and Poker Stars will not be denied a license by the Nevada Gambling Commission should the bill pass, because they have served the US poker public until now.

One of the fears of sites such as Poker Stars and Full Tilt Poker is that should an online poker bill pass on a federal level, they will be denied a license because they, in the eyes of the US government, have blatantly flaunted the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) by continuing to offer their services to the US market.

The wording of the Nevada bill reads, in part: “The Commission shall not deny a license to an operator of internet poker… solely because the operator… before the effective date of this act, operates, operated or was associated with interstate or foreign commerce … while licensed in another jurisdiction.”

It will be interesting to see how things develop out of this proposed bill and whether Poker Stars will be more successful in pushing for legalized poker on a state level.

Posted in Las Vegas, Online Casinos.

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