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Senator Reid Poker Bill Dead for 2010

By Scott Carlson, Rakeback.com Poker News Senior Writer

Harry Reid Senator Online PokerThe Poker Players Alliance (PPA) issued a press release on Friday their disappointment with the Nevada Senator Harry Reid’s bill failing to pass. This story has had more twists and turns that could ever be imagined over the last several weeks. Now it’s time for the PPA to regroup and start lobbying a new congress when the 2011 session starts.

On the ESPN Poker Edge podcast (hat tip to Poker Grump), Phil Gordon asked Full Tilt Poker‘s Howard Lederer when he first heard about the 15 month blackout period. He answered a very interesting “a couple months ago”. If Lederer’s words are taken as gospel that means there has been something in the works for some time now. Why did Senator Reid wait until a few weeks before the end of the legislative session to introduce the bill? Did Senator Reid think that was the best way to get it passed?

Senator Reid wanted to attach the bill to a  must pass measure such as the tax cut bill or omnibus spending bill, similar to the way the UIGEA was passed. The “catch ’em while nobody is looking” approach proved not to work. Now the Senator is going to face a new congress knowing exactly what is going on and it realistically has little chance of passing in the next two years. If the Senator was open about passing this a few months ago, who knows what would have happened.
Maybe the Senator didn’t want it passed in the first place. He was against online gambling in the early going after all. It’s possible he did it as a last minute attempt, knowing it would stand little chance of passing, just to appease the casino industry that helped re-elect him. With his job safe for another six years, we shall see how much work is done to try and pass a bill.

Check out PPA Executive Director John Pappas in an interview on from Friday with Bloomberg Television.

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