Chris Christie throws cold water on online poker in NJ

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Jan 23, 2013 Posted in Poker News | 3 Comments »

Online Poker BillFor the second straight year New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is going down to the wire with his decision on online poker in the Garden State. Christie has until February 4, 2013 to make a decision on an online poker bill that easily passed the state legislature and Senate (for the second straight year) but considering his answers in his weekly “Ask the Governor” radio appearance, it doesn’t seem Christie is onboard yet [transcript from]:

Well, [the bill] is sitting on my desk. I’ve got to make a decision very soon. I haven’t made a final decision yet, but here are the things – two things that I’m concerned about.

The first is that I don’t know that it really will help Atlantic City. And I’m concerned that it may drive traffic away from Atlantic City – that if people can gamble in their own homes on their laptops, why are they going to go to Atlantic City? And I think it’s contrary to what we’re trying to accomplish there.

Secondly, I’m also really concerned about setting up a whole new generation of addicted gamblers. You know, if you can sit on the edge on your bed on your laptop and gamble away the paycheck – that’s a lot different than making the decision to go down to Atlantic City to gamble in a casino. So I’ve got those two concerns.

I haven’t made a final decision yet, but I have those two concerns, and you should know that that’s the way I feel. And [there is] in part the reasons that I vetoed the bill before, in addition to some ways that it was constructed that made no sense, either. So I’m taking a very close look at it, I was reading it over the weekend, and reading the briefing from my staff in depth, and I’m going to have to make a decision in the next couple of days.

The bill would allow New Jersey casinos to open online poker rooms in the state, and Christie’s signature on the bill would also mean a tentative between PokerStars and the Atlantic Club Casino would go through, allowing the #1 online poker site in the world to legally reenter the US market.

Christie, who many consider a serious 2016 presidential candidate may seek to avoid putting his name on a piece of legislation that would most certainly ranker the conservative base of the Republican party, although Christie has taken on this contingent recently, speaking out on a number of issues that Republicans have criticized him for –here is hoping he takes them on at least one more time!


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3 Responses to “Chris Christie throws cold water on online poker in NJ”

  1. lb1 says:

    So if Christie veto’s the bill, New Jersey misses out on the entire online gambling business, which is happpening in several other states. They are pushing forward and those states will reap the rewards. Atlantic City will still continue to lose business and jobs. Without a catalyst to increase revenues AC will continue to decline. Online gambling will generate revenue and guaranteed constrution/technology jobs.
    Picture New Jersey signing pacts with other states to support internet gambling. That is even more revenues for the state. Those casinos that would be running the online gaming would then infuse more money into AC, thus creating more jobs. IT’S SIMPLE BUSINESS!!
    6+ years of declines will continue without a catalyst. The governor says he’s worried people won’t go to AC. They won’t if it ends up being a run down dump, like it became in the 70’s. Unless the casinos have the money they won’t put it into AC. They will lay off more worker and casinos will close. With falling revenues year over year the properties will decline and with the property decline, you will see the public visits to AC decline. IT”S SIMPLE BUSINESS!!

    When Vegas injected the money they made into their properties, values rose, attendance rose and state revenues rose. If the AC casinos don’t get more revenue, forget it. The governor has not put out any ideas that have worked to increase traffic to AC, and after Sandy the job is even more difficult. So shoting down guarantied revenue and jobs without trying won’t fix the growing problem, it will only get worse!

  2. Steve Ruddock says:

    completely agree. More worrisome is his use of the “problem gamblers” line of attack, which is merely a talking point and not backed up by any facts.

  3. Bob says:

    I think that Christie should sign the bill without it A.C is just living on borrowed time .I have been to A.C once and Vegas (few times) would never go back to A.C have nothing to offer.
    I think online gambling will bring revenue and also bring in business to A.C like extra tournament via online gambling getting in on the ground floor is his best advantage (will he blow it)as far as problem gamblers being created you will always have them and if they don’t get it from online they will be a problem in the casino.

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