PPA applies more pressure

jetset

RIP Brian
Joined
Feb 22, 2001
Location
Earth
PPA PRESSURE ON CONGRESS THIS WEEK

100 members to lobby the lawmakers in Washington

The 800 000 member Poker Players' Alliance is gearing up to energetically lobby Washington lawmakers this week by flying in 100 members, including several poker champions such as Chris Moneymaker, to get poker exempted from anti-online gambling laws which already feature unfair exemptions for online horse races, state lotteries and fantasy sports.

Raising the stakes in Washington, the two-year-old lobbying group plans on pressing Congress to consider several new bills that would exempt poker from the law or regulate the gaming industry.

It's legal to play poker online, but the UIGEA made it illegal for U.S. banks and credit-card companies to process payments to online gambling businesses outside the United States.

John Pappas, the executive director of the PPA, claims the law only forced several reputable public British companies such as PartyGaming PLC and 888 Holdings PLC that had financial and age safeguards in place out of the U.S. online poker market.

"The idea that we can stop people from doing this [playing poker online] seems a bit irrational," said Pappas, who estimates there are between 15 million to 23 million U.S. Internet poker players.

The group backs the Frank bill to license and regulate Internet gaming, in general. A small tax on online poker operators could net the government at least a couple of billion dollars in revenue, Pappas said.

Chaired by former New York Sen. Alfonse D'Amato and now lobbyist, the group has also upped its lobbying ante, spending $640 000 in the first six months this year, compared with $540 000 in all of 2006.
 

jetset

RIP Brian
Joined
Feb 22, 2001
Location
Earth
Update

PPA COUNTS WASHINGTON FLY-IN A SUCCESS

Poker ambassadors gave politicians something to think about

The Poker Players' Alliance three day Washington education project last week looks to have been successful, giving politicians another perspective on Internet poker and garnering significant media coverage for the 800 000 member poker lobbying and pressure group.

One of the PPA members who met with Congress posted on 2+2 Forums that Representative Jim Moran of Virginia has agreed to cosponsor HR 2046 (Barney Frank's proposal to regulate online gambling) and this was confirmed this week.

Nearly 100 Poker Players' Alliance members, many of them celebrities on the international poker circuit, converged on Capitol Hill for a conference and to talk with legislators about online gaming.

"By all accounts the Washington Fly-In and policy conference was a huge success, and we made a significant impression on Congress and the media," said John Pappas, PPA's executive director.

The group spent three days lobbying and talking to media and politicians about online gambling, and holding in-depth discussions with 48 members of the U.S. House and Senate to give them a more balanced perspective on the benefits and desirability of legal online poker.

"We were armed with the message that poker is a game of skill which should be regulated, not prohibited - and we successfully delivered that message," Pappas said. "Several of our meetings resulted in commitments of support and co-sponsorship of H.R. 2046 and H.R. 2610."

Among the points made by the group were:

* Technology has progressed sufficiently to effectively combat problem gambling and ensure that players are of legal age.

* Billions in potential tax revenues from online poker are being lost under the UIGEA.

* Appropriate federal regulation can ensure that minors are kept out of sites, services are provided to problem gamblers and the proper taxes are collected.

* Prohibitions don't work. The UIGEA effectively bans online poker in the U.S. and drives those players underground. Meanwhile, poker continues to grow in popularity nationwide. Seventy-five percent of Americans oppose banning online poker.

* If Congress allows Americans to bet on horses, state lotteries and even fantasy sports online, why can't they play a skill game like poker with other consenting adults?

Poker personality Howard 'The Professor' Lederer played a major role in the PPA's policy forum, "Poker: Public Policy, Politics, Skill and the Future of the American Tradition," on Wednesday. He and Professor Charles Nesson of Harvard, Radley Balko and Kenneth Adams led the discussion as participants took a look at the political future of poker.

Pappas said that it was important that poker players in the United States become more politically aware and active, making their voices heard by their political representatives and ensuring that their vote counted.

He also said one of the highlights of the conference was the Tuesday night reception on Capitol Hill where more than 150 staffers and PPA members gathered together to talk poker.

Top players like Andy Bloch met with congressional aides, attended a capacity-crowd "policy forum" and played demonstration hands, arriving at the National Democratic Club after walking the corridors of power to hold a poker education clinic, followed by a no-limit Texas Hold-'em shoot-out while fans watched and some lawmakers joined in.

"It was awesome," Pappas said. "Even better, eight members of Congress attended the reception, including Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.), to show their support for the PPA. I have worked in Washington for a long time, and I can tell you how difficult it is to get members of Congress to show up to these types of events. It is a testament to the many hours the PPA has spend building our credibility with lawmakers."
 

jetset

RIP Brian
Joined
Feb 22, 2001
Location
Earth
PPA CHAIRMAN WARNS ON W.T.O. COMPENSATION

"In a matter of months, you're going to see billions of dollars in trade sanctions coming down against the United States"

The New York Post gave prominence this week to the visit by delegates from the Poker Players' Alliance to Washington to educate US politicians on the benefits of regulating online poker, publishing an interview with chairman Senator Alphonse D'Amato.

The article commented that despite daunting odds of reversing the effects of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, one wild card could force Washington's hand: an international trade dispute with Antigua over online gambling that could end up leaving the U.S. on the hook for billions of dollars.

The article recapped events leading to this position, pointing out that the World Trade Organisation recently ruled that the U.S. violated its international treaty commitments by going after offshore online gambling outfits without cracking down on American operators offering remote betting on state lotteries, horse and dog racing.

After the ruling, Washington said it would remove Internet gambling from its WTO treaty obligations. That raised the ire of such allies as Europe, Japan and other WTO member nations which filed separate compensation claims against the U.S.

"In a matter of months, you're going to see billions of dollars in trade sanctions coming down against the United States," former New York Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, told The Post. "Then, I believe we will start to have a profoundly new and different group lobbying, saying you've got to stop this prohibition [on Internet gambling]," he said. "We look like the ugly American."

The article emphasises that playing poker online for money isn't explicitly illegal in the U.S. And Congress stopped short of passing an outright ban on Internet gambling sites last October. Instead, lawmakers cracked down by banning credit card companies from making payments to online gambling sites through legislation attached to a late-night, eve-of-recess and unrelated bill on port security.
 

dominique

Dormant account
Joined
Jul 5, 2003
Location
The Boonies
A good show about that was widely seen across local TV channels all over the US during evening news, a very friendly piece that wasn't just friendly to Poker but to online gambling in general.

Very nice, public opinion is changing as a result of such shows. There is more and more public awareness of the personal freedom issue, and the elections are creeping up. :thumbsup:
 

jetset

RIP Brian
Joined
Feb 22, 2001
Location
Earth
Washington Fly-In generates a DoJ hearing

U.S. JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO HOLD ONLINE POKER HEARING

PPA will submit opinions on November 14[/I

Claimed by the Poker Players' Association as a by-product of the organisation's recent Washington Fly-In initiative (see previous InfoPowa reports) the U.S. Department of Justice is to hold a hearing on Internet gaming at 10 00am on November 14, says PPA executive director John Pappas.

Speaking to the online poker portal PocketFives.com, Pappas said this was a huge step for online poker’s future, and commented: “We talked with Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) along with some of our poker pros during the fly in. He pledged to hold a hearing and we’re pleased that it’s happening.”

Expected at the hearing is an expert on World Trade Organisation policy; a representative from the Department of the Treasury; a representative from the Department of Justice, and one Congressman on each side of the issue. Poker pro Annie Duke will also be in attendance as a witness.

Pappas expects hard-hitting questions: “Our goal is to have members of Congress ask tough questions of the Department of Justice representative about their inconsistent enforcement of internet gaming," he told PocketFives. "We also want them to point to the statute that they used to claim that playing internet poker is illegal.

"The WTO Expert is there to incite both free trade Republicans and Democrats to action in order to preserve our trading status and fulfill our WTO obligations. In addition, we want to demonstrate there is appropriate and viable age verification software out there.

"Finally, for Annie Duke, our goal is to distinguish poker as something different than other forms of gaming, show that it’s a skill game, and address the civil liberties issue.”

Chairman Conyers has been a supporter of internet gambling regulation, Pappas comments, saying: “Chairman Conyers believes UIGEA is a terrible bill and that regulation is a good approach. I wouldn’t be surprised if, somewhere down the road, he introduces his own legislation.”

Despite the short notice, the PPA is hoping for a good turnout of legislators at the hearing, and has been prepping members of Congress to ask the questions that will help clarify poker’s future. “A hearing is just one step in the process,” says Pappas. "A vote may still be quite some time away, but this is an important initial step to take."

The hearing is open to the general public on Wednesday, November 14th, at 10:00am at 2141 Rayburn House Office Building.
 

lojo

Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht
Joined
Jan 18, 2007
Location
USA
Again, it looks like the PPA don't give a damn about anything but poker and would be glad to have their sport sanctioned and all other gamiong sacrificed at the altar.
 

paul02085

Dormant account
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Location
USA
Again, it looks like the PPA don't give a damn about anything but poker and would be glad to have their sport sanctioned and all other gamiong sacrificed at the altar.


One of the main points the PPA uses as a reason poker should be available to US players is that it is a game of skill. It would be kind of hard for them to make this argument about say..... slot machines.

The online casino industry should form its own lobbying group with its own arguments and agenda.
 

lojo

Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht
Joined
Jan 18, 2007
Location
USA
One of the main points the PPA uses as a reason poker should be available to US players is that it is a game of skill. It would be kind of hard for them to make this argument about say..... slot machines.

The online casino industry should form its own lobbying group with its own arguments and agenda.

Thanks Paul. I agree, kind of... now an open response to PPA lackeys...



'If there was no luck involved I'd win every game' bwahahaha

Best of luck to the PPA, but the fact is, we are in this boat together. I'm revolted by their choice of lobby; he might be a crook but he's 'your' crook. Thank the gawds that we 'gamblers' aren't affiliated by proxy with the likes of D'Amato!

Poker is gambling and you are beating a lame horse trying to pretend with expert witnesses and industry insiders and cooked statistics that it is purely a game of skill.

Divide and conquer... They did. I'm pleased to lift my voice against the PPA's narcissism, and suggest you come into the fold and support Barney Frank's bill... it would do you no harm and all of us some good.
 

Mousey

Ueber Meister Mouse
Joined
Sep 12, 2004
Location
Up$hitCreek
Oh, for crying out loud... where's my carve out for Video Poker?? I want a carve out, too!!! ***whine*** and then there's blackjack...

I suppose allowing online poker is better than nothing... but ... ummm... how're the banks (UIGEA) supposed to know we're not playing slots or BJ while logged in to the poker room with that money they let us deposit?? :D

Just how many cans of worms can online players get Congress to open?
 

lojo

Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht
Joined
Jan 18, 2007
Location
USA
Good points, Mousey...

I'd like to fix my post and say "group narcissism" in re the PPA.

Speaking of narcissism, I wish I could thank myself for that post.
 

jetset

RIP Brian
Joined
Feb 22, 2001
Location
Earth
MAJORITY OPPOSE U.S. GOVERNMENT POSITION ON ONLINE POKER

October poll shows a 2 - 1 margin against poker ban

On the eve of a House Judiciary Committee hearing on online gambling, the Poker Players' Alliance has drawn attention to a recent independent survey which shows that Americans are unhappy with the US government's anti-online gambling stance.

According to the poll, conducted by RT Strategies National Omnibus Poll, Americans, by a two to one margin (51 percent - 21 percent) oppose government attempts to ban Internet poker, and strongly support federal regulation of Internet poker as a means to control underage gambling and help problem gamblers.

Full details can be found at:
You do not have permission to view link Log in or register now.


The survey took place between October 18-21, 2007 and involved a sample of 1 000 adults divided almost equally by Republican and Democratic political party preference. Margin for error was calculated at + 3.1.

Today's hearings (see previous InfoPowa report) will be moderated by Congressman John Conyers, chair of the House Judiciary Committee and in the past a proponent of a full Congressional study of the online gambling phenomenon. Diverse experts, including the PPA will address the committee when proceedings start in Washington mid-morning.

"Chairman Conyers hearing is an important step toward educating Congress about the folly of an Internet gaming prohibition," said PPA Chairman, former Senator Alfonse D''Amato. "[Such a ban] won''t work, and it is tremendously bad public policy. Only through proper regulation can we provide the proper safeguards for consumers and generate billions in additional, and much needed, tax revenue for this country."

Hearing Information:

Wednesday, November 14th at 10:00 AM

"Establishing Consistent Enforcement Policies in the Context of Online Wagers"

House Judiciary Committee, 2141 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Top