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NEW HOPE FOR LEGALIZED POKER IN US

Some of the online poker’s experts have told Michael Shapiro of San Francisco Chronicle that this “game of skill” and it is on its way to becoming legalized in the United States. The federal government and GOP platform say that Web gambling prohibition is the main obstacle that is getting in the way. The states will have to make a decision in which some just strictly say “No”.

The state of Utah has already passed a measure that is going to ban any type of online gaming even if the government allows them to have it. Utah has predominately a Mormon population and this is the reason that Utah does not even have a state lottery. There may be other states that may decide to opt out of the legislation also. Washington State has already made it a Class C felony for the public to play online poker for real sums of cash.

In a decision by New York Supreme Court Judge Jack Weinstein has said that poker is a “game of skill”. When he said this he threw out a conviction against a local resident by the name of Lawrence DiCristina, who was hosting buy-in games in a Staten Island, NY warehouse, where this house took around five percent of each pot.

"The opinion is significant," said Whittier Law School Professor I. Nelson Rose, in an interview with San Francisco Chronicle. It undercuts "the most important remaining federal statute that could be applied to Internet poker, now that the Department of Justice has limited the (1961) Wire Act to sports betting."

Nelson Rose has said that individual states will have the final decision and there may be some states like Utah that might not agree to it. An attorney by the name of Jeff Ifrah said, "The only thing that distinguishes online poker from land-based operators was whether the federal statute was violated," he said. "Now that that's been thrown out the window, I definitely think it does something to restore the integrity of the game."

Weinstein’s decision has reinforced the Justice Department’s ruling in the December 1961 Wire Act, which only applies to sports betting and is helping pave the way for legalized Internet poker on a state-by-state basis.

Source: Gambling911