Archive for October 2020

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" Paris

Lynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

This is definitely NOT a political blog. However, there are times when politics and poker bump into each other, and, in the case of Lindsey Graham, the Senator from South Carolina who is undeniably the biggest hypocrite in a Senate replete with them, his professed hatred of internet gambling makes him an enemy of online poker players. It also allows me to focus this blog on him, which it is my pleasure to do.

For whatever reason, Graham has been anti-poker for many years, ending with his co-sponsorship of a bill that tried to prohibit all forms of internet gambling.

Back in 2011, the Department of Justice re-interpreted the Federal Wire Act (1961), thereby allowing states to establish online lotteries, as well as legalize online casino games. This proved to be very profitable for Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware, but Graham wasn’t buying it. His response was, “Because of the Obama Administration’s decision, virtually any cell phone or computer can again become a video poker machine.”

In 2014, Graham tried to kill the deal by introducing the Restore America’s Wire Act (RAWA) to Congress. Its main purpose was “To restore long-standing United States policy that the Wire Act prohibits all forms of Internet gambling, and for other purposes.His bill died in committee, to the delight of poker players everywhere.

Apparently, Graham tried to get the last three attorneys general to take up his cause, but none of them was particularly interested.

Then along came billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, whose views on internet poker were well known. He called it “a threat to our society” and had backed Graham’s 2014 bill, which raised some doubts as to Graham’s real motivation.

“The fact that Sheldon is on board is a good thing,” said Graham at the time, “But I’m doing this because this is what I feel like I should do.” Really?

Given that Senator Graham is fighting hard to retain his Senate seat and has publicly displayed his blatant hypocrisy (think the recent Supreme Court nomination) it just could be that the Senator is trying to play his cards right in order to get his hands on a much bigger donation from the megadonor. 

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Pocket Bullets ParisJim “Pocket Bullets” Paris

A while back I was playing a few hands of Texas Hold ’em online with some old friends and a few new ones. When someone mentioned the worst beat they ever had and explained that he was holding a 7 and a 9. The flop was 8, 10 and J of diamonds  giving him a  Diamond Straight Flush (7 to J) and he splashed all in, he was snap called by his friend who was siting with a Q K of diamonds. The turn was an A and an A giving him the dreaded Royal Straight Flush (10 to A). That certainly qualified as a bad beat. I was reminded of the worst, and craziest bad beat that I had written about several years ago and decided to repost here for your enjoyment

Back half a dozen years or so I was kicking back with a few friends after getting knocked out of our friendly local tourney, enjoying a cold draft and laughing at the BS being bantered around. Someone asked, “What’s the craziest bad beat y’all have seen in a tourney?” One of the guys said he watched a video of this year’s  Big One for One Drop at the WSOP. This was when Connor Drinan and Cary Katz, both of whom had paid one million dollars to play, and both of whom picked up pocket aces. Drinan with ace of diamonds and ace of clubs vs Katz’s ace of spades and ace of hearts. After raising and re-raising each other a few times Drinan splashes his poker chips all in and Katz snap calls him.TPS Poker Chips

The flop came down with 2d – Kh – 5h, the turn and the river were both hearts giving Katz a flush and knocking Drinan out in 18th place and out of the money. That definitely qualifies as a bad beat, and certainly many will say it’s the worst ever because of the million dollar buy in.

However, in my mind, the worst beat ever is still the battle between Justin Phillips and Moriyuki Mabuchi at the 2009 WSOP. Mabuchi bet after the river  – Phillips raised  – Mabuchi splashed his chips all in and Phillips called. The board showed A of hearts, 9 of clubs, Queen-Ten-A of diamonds. Phillips turned over a J-K of diamonds for a Royal Flush and Mabushi turned over the Ace of spades and the Ace of clubs for Quad Aces. Insane beat. Quad Aces destroyed by a Royal Flush. The chance of a royal flush and quad aces happening in the same hand is 1 in 2.7 billion!  To me that qualifies it as the worst bad beat ever, despite the money.

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