There are two things that are going to be upon us before you know it: the 2008 World Series of Poker (begins on May 30th) and the 2008 Presidential Election in the United States (November 4th).
When the time comes to decide who will receive your vote in the 2008 Presidential Election, will a candidate's stance on Internet gambling affect your vote or is it a non-issue for you when you are deciding on who to vote for?
This is an important election in terms of Internet gambling in the United States. The UIGEA was snuck into the SAFE Port ACT, and instead the folding, the industry has persevered and kept growing. We had e-wallets fold and Neteller tangle with the Department of Justice and pull out of the US market, but still the online gambling industry continues to grow. The skies seem to be brightening and regulation of the online gambling industry seems more likely now, especially with some of the big casino companies (Harrah's and MGM Mirage) now in favor of legalization of online gambling. There seems to be some positive momentum right now, and it is important (for the industry) that a pro-regulation President is elected, or else we will go backwards.
Three people come to mind as those most likely to further the cause of legalization and regulation of online poker in the United States: Ron Paul, Hillary Clinton (supports industry position to study Internet gambling to see if it can be regulated) and Barack Obama (supports a study and supports regulation to "address the worst abuses.")
If you didn't really support a certain person for US President but they were pro-regulation, would you vote for them? If you considered yourself a Republican and made your living playing online poker, would you vote for Hillary Clinton over someone like Mitt Romney if they ended up winning the Democratic and Republican nominations?
The world of online poker is populated with many young Americans who have never voted before. If the issue of online gambling regulation is an important one to you (or any other issue for that matter), then you should make sure that you are registered to vote.
There is a good chance that nothing will happen in regards to Internet gambling over the next 4 1/2 years no matter who is elected; however, it would be nice to give the potential regulation of online poker the best chance possible to succeed.
Filed Under: UIGEA