News from one of my correspondents in New York prompted this posting.
Man, sometimes help comes from strange places.
Those who have been in favor of making Online Poker legal in the United States got a big supporter from New York.
Alfonse D’Amato, a former senator of the state and current Chairman of the Poker Players Alliance, stated that he is in favor of allowing the practice.
“Why is it OK for a group of friends to sit around the kitchen table and play a friendly game of poker, but not OK for people to play over their computers?” remarked D’Amato.
Good point Al.
D’Amato was quick to point out that the basic structure of online poker does not violate any current federal laws. Citing the Interstate Wire Act of 1961, which relates to sports betting, and not poker as those opposed to the notion have said.
D’Amato and Poker Players Alliance Director John Pappas have now joined forces in favor of a bill that would legalize the industry. Strange bedfellows I’d say.
Pappas said that banks are discouraged to do business with online poker companies, making sure no illegal activity is occurring.
“There is what amounts to a safe harbor already embedded in the law, so that any bank that does want to transact with an online poker business simply needs a reasoned legal opinion that it their client is not involved in restricted transactions,” Pappas said.
Online gambling has been outlawed since 2006, but a new bill sent to the floor to be debated and passed would be a huge victory of online casinos, as they could potentially see a giant leap forward in terms of revenue, despite the struggling economy and difficult times that casinos are having.