Should poker be excluded from the current US gambling legislation?

United States
November 27, 2007 11:05pm CST
Currently the game of poker is included in the US gambling act (don't know what it's actual title is). While it is not illegal to play poker (or play any gambling game for that matter), it is illegal to fund the account with a US financial institution. Since poker is not a traditional gambling game in the sense that players are playing against other players, instead of against the house, should it be excluded from that legislation? My personal opinion is yes, but that is quite biased as I play alot of poker, most of it online. The argument I've heard most commonly, and I somewhat support it, is that because it's more difficult to fund an account (taking as much as 2 weeks to post), compulsive gamblers can't lose their money as fast. My response to that would be this. In my state, it's legal to play poker. At any given time in my town, I can find a game to play. The smallest table in town is a $2/4 with most being $3/6 or $5 spread limit. To play right at the lowest table I need at least $80. Online, I can go as low as .01/.02. But most of all, there are games that you can buy into comfortably for $10 or $20 that play just as well as a $4/8 live game. A compulsive player can get his "fix" for $20 online instead of the $300-$500 he blows at the live table. Rather than spend their time and energy doing nothing more than making it a pain in the a** for legitamate players to manage their money, they should concentrate on making sure that poker sites are on the up and up. Stories are rampant on forums about cheating in online poker. What do you guys think?
3 responses
• United States
4 Dec 07
I too am biased as I play online and was making some good money as an affiliate (still making some but not nearly as much). But I wish the politicians would look at how hypocritical they are being my allowing lotteries, horse tracks and riverboats while not allowing online gaming. Either it's right or it's wrong - make up your minds.
• United States
4 Dec 07
How do you become an affiliate playing poker? The only extra money I've made from poker is through rakeback programs. I've gotten some free gear to promote at some live events that I've played, but never any cash by being "affiliated" with someone. Could you educate me a bit?
• United States
5 Dec 07
You become an affiliate by promoting different sites. They pay you a % of the rake and/or tournament fees. This would be for the lifetime of the player. Other sites pay you a one-time flat fee if the player plays enough. I promote freerolls and if the player deposits and plays, I'll make some money. If anyone is interested in more details, drop me a note.
• United States
8 Dec 07
I put in a friends request so I can chat with you a bit more about this. Thanks for the info.
@theprogamer (10539)
• United States
8 Dec 07
Well, at least you pointed out another thing US legislation fails in. I actually see what you are saying with excluding poker from the legislation. You are correct since Poker is played against the players (usually) and not the house. I'd say the legislation might be a bit intrusive on this. I'm not as up to speed but I think gambling should be left to the states. I'd say online poker should be fine too since it is more against the other players and not the house. I'm one to promote forms of entertainment instead of restrict them. Of course there should be considerations for the compulsive, the inappropriate, etc. I'd say people should have more common sense instead of using the law to prevent a few from their vices all while punishing everyone who's got their stuff together.
@yanxchick (252)
• United States
29 Nov 07
I certainly agree that poker should be legalized online, but the fact is it cannot stop at poker. Poker is more of a game of strategy than it is luck, I agree with that sentiment as well, but whose to put down a law to say that is the case. I think overall online gambling should be allowed and in time the Unlawful Gaming Enforcement Act will have workarounds. States can overturn this law and allow "gambling" to go on in their state. I knowo Nevada is working on this, but the state is first waiting to see what the Legislature is going to do with this. I don't play online poker. I hate playing online, but I feel that people should be allowed to choose. The way the government could feel better about this is taxing the heck out of it and make money off online gaming.