Debate on Online Poker in California Intensifies

It has been a major issue for quite some time now. Should online poker be legalized, or should it be left just the way it is? With the previous incident that happened on the month of April this year, when three of the biggest names in the online industry of poker have been shut down by the US Department of Justice for money laundering and bank fraud, US citizens are having a tough time looking for an online poker destination. This proves to be a very unfortunate incident for those who were making money through playing the game on a regular basis and have chosen to make a career out of it. Now the issue whether state of California is going to legalize the online poker or not escalates to a more intense degree.

Legalizing Online Poker

The California Online Poker Association together with the support of a number of poker rooms as well as the Morongo and San Manuel brands of Indians have started to pass on ads on the television as well as radio stations encouraging the public to agree with the Senate Bill 40 by Sen. Lou Correa which will legalize online poker. Of course, once the game is legalized on the internet, the state will then have a new source of tax revenue. Citizens will have more job opportunities as well which is another huge plus to online poker’s legalization. Presently, California doesn’t look very well as it needs to cough up a $4 billion in revenue this December, they will have to cut down on their budget for various services. Of course, the answer to this would be the possible tax revenues the state can get from online poker. The state will then be able to instantly receive up to $250 and possibly billions with later proceedings.

The Opposition

On the other side of the issue, a number of gambling tribes oppose the legalization of poker, the reason for which is that their opportunities for potential earnings will be reduced. In turn, these establishments discourage the legalization of online poker and ask the Legislature not to act on the issue. Robert H. Smith, chairman of the California Tribal Business Alliance states that “There are numerous stakeholders who stand to be irreparably harmed should the legislation be ‘ram-rodded’ through this legislative year and this surely would be a disservice to ALL Californians, Tribal and Non-Tribal alike.” He also added that “For these reasons, we believe the Legislature should not take any action on intrastate Internet poker legislation during the final month of the legislative year and should instead opt to utilize the interim to work with all interested parties to develop a consensus bill.”

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