California Card Rooms Support Internet Poker

Published July 21, 2014 by Elana K

California Card Rooms Support Internet Poker

25 California card rooms issue letter to state legislators in support of online poker legislation.

Twenty-five California card rooms issued a letter last week in support of internet poker legislation; the letter was addressed to Senator Lou Correa, Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer and members of the Governmental Organization Committees, and elaborated on the card rooms’ position on a number of hot issues.

This letter of support comes after an announcement last month that 13 of California’s Indian tribes had come to an agreement on the language to be used in a potential poker bill.

California Grand Casino legal representative, David Fried commented, "I think it's pretty impressive that 13 Indian tribes are all on the same page with legislation, and now you've got 25 card rooms also putting out what their position is. That in and of itself raises the possibility that legislation will move, and in August there will probably be amendments made to the legislation to address people's concerns."

The Bad Actors Clause

The letter from the card rooms expressed a general support for online poker legislation, with two main points:

  • All the cards rooms must be allowed to participate in a way of their choosing
  • Inclusion of a bad actors clause

The bad actors clause is the hottest point of contention in the online poker legislation debate; the term “bad actor” refers to any online gaming company that continued to conduct business after it was outlawed in 2006.

The demand for the inclusion of a bad actors clause is the reason why three of the largest card rooms in California did not sign on the letter - Commerce, Hawaiian Gardens, and The Bike. These three card rooms have a partnership with PokerStars, one of the world’s leading poker sites, and want the site’s fate to be decided by the state’s gaming regulators, and not by predetermined legislation. As of now, the draft of the bill does include a bad actors clause.


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