Posts Tagged ‘Nevada’

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" Paris

Lynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

Not surprisingly, all Nevada casinos were ordered closed more than two months ago, turning the Las Vegas strip into a wide, empty road. But many states are beginning to re-open, at least in part and with strict CDC guidelines to follow. Nevada’s governor, Steve Sisolak, has begun permitting casino restaurants to reopen while keeping clubs, shows and gaming shut down. And let’s face it: you all don’t go to Vegas for the restaurants!

The Nevada Gaming Control Board recently laid out its health/safety guidelines for casinos to follow when they reopen. One guideline that poker players have already been reluctantly anticipating is that poker rooms must limit poker tables to a maximum of four players. 

But there is more. UNLV epidemiologist, Brian Labus, has said that Vegas is not ready to open the casinos. And when they do, he says, he’s worried that many of the planned safety features won’t be a match for the virus. Limiting card room capacity, adding hand sanitizer stations, and aggressive cleaning of poker chips and chairs can help reduce some risk, Labus says, but the nature of coronavirus won’t allow it to be contained. Poker during Covid-19Players sit together for an extended period of time, coughing and breathing in the same shared air, and there’s nothing you can do about that.

Labus also didn’t think the new plexiglass dividers that some poker rooms around the country are trying out, would be effective from a public health standpoint, beyond giving players an artificial sense of security.

Texas Poker Store - Nighthawk Poker TableWhen the Vegas strip opens, there will be a limited amount of casinos to visit for slots, roulette etc. and even fewer poker rooms, if any. So if you want to play poker in the foreseeable future, Stay Home. You’re either going to be playing online or, after sanitizing everything and making sure no one has a fever, you and a few socially-distanced friends will be playing at your own poker table

Click here to leave us your comments or thoughts.

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

I doubt that many of us worry much about opinions issued by the U.S. Department of Justice, especially since the DOJ issues literally hundreds of opinions, on hundreds of topics, on a weekly basis. They are not laws, after all.

But, last week, when the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel issued a new opinion concerning the 1961 Interstate Wire Act, the online poker industry was not only worried, but holding its collective breath. The opinion reversed the previous stance of 2011 which concluded that the Wire Act only applied to sports betting, opining this time around that the Wire Act applies to online poker as well.

Again, it’s not the law; it’s an opinion that will definitely be tested in the courts. But it’s an opinion that definitely threatens the growth of the online poker industry, hitting hardest those states currently trying to get bills introducing online poker passed in their states. It could also have a major negative impact on the future of interstate compacts like the highly profitable one that exists between New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada.

Senator Ray LesniakFormer New Jersey State Sen. Raymond Lesniak was a major player in the fight to get online poker in New Jersey and helped create the multistate online poker alliance that facilitates liquidity sharing. He’s ready to step back into the fray and do battle in the courts if necessary. As he told Online Poker Report:

“It looks like I will have to go to court again to straighten out the Justice Department’s overreaching on states’ rights, as I did with sports betting. This opinion is outrageous. It puts state lotteries at risk and state revenues. If Congress won’t fix it, I will through the judicial process.”

The burning question remains: can online poker in the U.S. survive this new Wire Act opinion? Or does it muddy the waters even more concerning which forms of online gaming are legal and which are not. It certainly will make those states that have yet to introduce gaming legislation proceed with caution, if at all.

Send me your thoughts or questions on this!!

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

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.

Rick Snyder kills on-line poker for Michigan

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.

Tell me what you think, send me your comments!

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

Most people in this country are eager to cast their votes on November 6th. Some are planning to vote for candidates they’re hoping will bring about substantive change, while others are voting to maintain the status quo. You all know which category you fit in.  But since this is a POKER column, I thought you might enjoy a brief election story about what’s at stake in the state of Nevada, where, surprisingly, the future of online poker is in danger.The Future of Online Poker

You have every right to scratch your head on that one. I mean,seriously? Didn’t they start the whole thing? Well, yes, but, their current governor, Brian Sandoval, a staunch advocate for online gambling, is ineligible to run again due to Nevada’s term limits law. So this is going to be quite a contest. Nevada’s current Attorney General, Adam Laxalt, won the Republican Party primary this past June and wants to be the state’s next governor. Laxalt is a die-hard anti-online gaming politician who has supported not only killing online poker in Nevada but also across the United States.

Laxalt’s opponent is Steve Sisolak, a pro-online poker Democrat. Nevada is known as a swing state, which means it has historically gone back and forth between Republicans and Democrats in presidential elections. In fact, if Sisolak wins, it would be the first time a democrat would have been elected governor of Nevada in 20 years.  But it’s a very close race.

What’s the moral of this brief election tale? Sometimes you have to vote BLUE if you don’t want the issues you care about to move backwards!! (or move in the wrong direction) ??

What do you think about online poker games? Send us your comments or thoughts!!!