Congressman to introduce online poker bill

Posted by Gerry Poltorak on May 26, 2011 Posted in Legal Poker News, US Poker News | No Comments »

Congressman Joe Barton (R-TX), best known for his deplorable apology to BP Oil executives in Congress during the hearings into the BP Gulf Oil spill, is the latest supporter of legalizing and regulating online poker. Barton is set to introduce a new piece of legislation that will legalize online poker, and is reportedly using the Poker Players Alliance for consulting purposes.

Barton also spoke at the PPA “Fly-In” on Tuesday, where he addressed a crowd of about 50-75 poker advocates along with John Campbell (R-CA) who has already proposed an online gaming bill along with Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA).  Other speakers at the gathering were PPA Board Members Greg Raymer, Linda Johnson, Jan Fisher, and PPA Chairman Alfonse D’Amato.

In addition to hosting their “Rally for Internet Poker” at the US Capitol, members of the PPA met with over 130 members of Congress, and according to an E-Mail sent to their members, many of the meetings were face-to-face and “to discuss the merits of licensing and regulation of online poker here in the U.S.”

It’s unclear at this time, but it appears that Barton’s upcoming bill would focus solely on online poker, and not on online gambling in general. According to, Barton’s bill would have a much higher chance of moving through the House Energy and Commerce Committee than the Frank/Campbell bill would in the House Financial Services Committee which is headed by the anti-gaming Spenser Bacchus (R-AL).

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