Mitt Romney AGAINST online gaming legislation

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Feb 03, 2012 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

In an interview in Las Vegas, Nevada ahead of this month’s Republican Primary in the state, Mitt Romney gave online poker players a glimpse at how a Romney administration would handle the sticky issue of online gaming in the US; he is against it. Romney’s stance on online gaming is buried in the very last sentence of an article on 8newsnow.com, where it states, “Romney also said he doesn’t support legalizing online gaming. He’s says he’s against it because of the social costs and people’s addictive gambling habits.”

This makes Romney the first of the Republican front-runners (aside from Libertarian Ron Paul whose political philosophy would seem to favor online gaming) who has made his stance on the issue clear, although it appears that both Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich would also be against online gaming legislation: Santorum, who takes a socially conservative stance across the board on just about every issue, is unlikely to allow online gaming legislation to pass his desk without a veto, and Gingrich’s Super-PAC has received some $10 million from Las Vegas mogul Sheldon Adelson, a staunch opponent of online poker.

So with a Paul candidacy unlikely and pro-online poker candidate Gary Johnson out of the race, it would seem that Barack Obama (who it should be noted has not come out for or against online gaming) will be the overwhelming choice for online poker players and advocates in the 2012 election, and considering the raw numbers on how many people feel that this is an important issue, this segment could very well become another group of “one-issue voters”.

How many votes this could mean for Obama is unclear, as there are two things at play for online poker advocates:

#1 – how many of them would support a Republican to begin with

#2 – Can he be strong enough in his stance in favor of online poker to get these people to the ballot box

On the first point it would seem that many poker players would entertain the notion of voting Republican (from my dealings with poker players they tend to be of a liberal to Libertarian mindset) and the Obama re-election team could very well sway these voters to the left by adamantly coming out in favor of online poker.

Point #2 is a bit trickier to quantify, since it’s no secret that most poker players are less than motivated anywhere other than at a poker table. And this is why it’s imperative that a candidate make their stance on this issue crystal clear. If Obama give a similar response to this issue as he does to Same-Sex Marriage for instance (I’m not against it, but…) poker players will likely stay home in November, but if he gives us one small iota of hope –even a single sentence saying he would sign an online poker bill that came across his desk—it’s my opinion that poker players would fully support him, taking to Social Media and the forums to spread the word.

This is also true for Mitt Romney or any other candidate; the poker community is looking for a definitive answer on this topic; take a cue from Gary Johnson who not only came out in favor of online poker , but courted the community with ads on 2+2!

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