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Heller “Working With Kyl” to Get Online Poker Through Senate

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Interesting read from the Las Vegas Review Journal this morning.

We’ve seen a string of stories over the last week or so about Reid and Kyl having a poker bill more or less in pocket; this wasn’t big news insomuch that the bill had been rumored for some time and PPA head John Pappas had basically confirmed it during the WSOP.

This story, however, goes above and beyond, confirming directly that the Republican Senator from Nevada – John Heller – is actively working to persuade his colleagues in the Senate to make a path for online poker.  Excerpt:

Heller said he is trying to persuade Republican leaders and GOP senators to clear the way for Internet poker legalization, allowing the casino industry to tap billions of dollars now wagered online.

“I’ve talked to leadership and a couple of colleagues,” Heller said, naming Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and leadership deputies Sen. John Cornyn of Texas and Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri. He said the aim was to “make sure … all of them have an idea of what we are trying to push in this effort.”

Whole thing here.

No article about federal online poker regulation in the US would be complete without a mention of Sheldon Adelson, and this one doesn’t disappoint.  What does Heller think about the man many believe is the primary impediment to online poker regs?

“He has an opinion and obviously that is taken into consideration, and we have to work with it and around it to try to make something happen,” Heller said. “I certainly don’t discount his position.

“I want everybody to have a voice in this process, including Mr. Adelson,” Heller said. “I don’t see his voice being any stronger or any less important than anybody else. He is just part of the puzzle.”

And what an interesting puzzle it is becoming indeed.

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Chris Grove
- Chris is the publisher of OnlinePokerReport.com. Grove also serves as a consultant to various stakeholders in the regulated market for online gambling in the United States.