About a week ago, I was ready to sing the praises of Michigan, the fifth state to join the three states with legal online poker sites already in operation: Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware, along with Pennsylvania, the fourth state that has passed the necessary legislation and is gearing up to join them.
By the time I sat down to write my blog, however, Michigan’s online poker bill had taken a dagger to the heart, having been vetoed by lame duck Governor Rick Snyder during his last few days in office. Despite the tremendous support of the Wolverine State’s poker players, and the fact that the bipartisan bill had easily passed through the state Senate and House of Representatives, Snyder decided that it wasn’t “appropriate to sign legislation that will effectively result in more gambling.”
Apparently, Snyder killed the bill due to concerns about how it might potentially affect the budget. In his veto letter, Snyder wrote, “Due to largely unknown budgetary concerns, I believe this legislation merits more careful study and comparison with how other states have, or will, authorize online gaming. To be blunt, we simply don’t have the data to support this change at this time.”
Michigan lawmakers expected this one to be passed easily due to broad support from both sides of the aisle. Now it looks like they’ll have to wait to see how newly elected Governor, Democrat Gretchen Whitmer, feels about online poker.