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  1. Hi everyone,

    I'm an Internet poker player who's upset by UIGEA, the heavy-handed Justice Dept. actions against various gaming sites, the Neteller payment delay, and many other issues where we've been targeted. We are good, law-abiding citizens under attack by nanny-staters who wish to pry into our homes and tell us what to do. As a result, I decided some time ago to initiate weekly actions on various poker sites, primarily 2+2 and the PPA forum. It seemed we could all work well together if we worked as a team. Would you all be interested in participating in fighting back with us? I hope so.

    I don’t personally dictate the actions; rather, I solicit input from my fellow players and then develop the actions based on group consensus. We have had some real successes since UIGEA passed. I look forward to working with everyone here to continue this. Together, we can secure our freedom to play online. I look forward to your support. Please remember to check here weekly for the latest plan and please try to participate. Also, please post your suggestions for future actions here. Thanks!

    <HR>

    Please note that this is now a multi-page thread, so be sure to go through all the pages to see the entire discussion....Thanks.
     
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  2. Want to stand up for your rights but have only 60 seconds? Click this link, either type your info or click your AutoFill button, then click &quot;submit&quot;. You'll send the PPA letter to both of your Senators and to your Congressman. It takes literally one minute!


    --------------------------------

    Fight for Online Poker!! Weeks of 11/26 &amp; 12/3

    Based on our discussions and posts here, let's do the following:

    1. We have two more weeks to submit our comments on the proposed UIGEA regulations (Dec. 12th) so let's make a lot of comments between now and then. Please click here for instructions on submitting your comments and for ideas on what to submit.

    2. The House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on Internet gaming on Nov. 14th. Please write and call your congressman to remind them of our victory. The letter we all co-wrote with PPA is here. Sending that takes less than one minute; adding info about the hearing takes only a few extra minutes. Regardless of when you last called, let's call this week. Phone numbers are here. And, please email the Judiciary Committee by clicking here to express your support for online poker. We won -- let's make sure we continue to be heard.

    3. Write to your governor to tell him state laws should support your freedom to play. If you have ANY connection to MA, please contact Gov. Patrick and tell him you won't tolerate a ban on Internet poker. If you have ANY connection to KY, please contact governor-elect Steve Beshear and ask him to ensure that Internet poker is not excluded in his proposal to legalize casino gaming in the state.

    4. Regularly write to newspapers and post to blogs. A few posts here and there can start to put us in the national zeitgeist.

    Thanks everyone!

    --------------------------------------------------------

    Contact Info:

    Your senators: www.senate.gov
    Your representative: www.house.gov

    House Judiciary Committee:
    http://judiciary.house.gov/contact.aspx
    2138 Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515
    (202) 225-3951

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)
    528 Hart Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510
    (202) 224-3542
    http://reid.senate.gov/contact/email_form.cfm

    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
    United States Senate
    361-A Russell Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510
    (202) 224-2541
    http://mcconnell.senate.gov/contact_form.cfm

    Michael Duncan (from Kentucky)
    Chairman, Republican National Committee
    Republican National Committee
    310 First Street, SE
    Washington, D.C. 20003
    email: Chairman@gop.com

    Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)
    Office of the Speaker
    H-232, US Capitol
    Washington, DC 20515
    (202) 225-0100
    http://speaker.house.gov/contact/
    email: AmericanVoices@mail.house.gov

    Rep. Steny Hoyer
    House Majority Leader
    H-107 Capitol Building
    Washington, D.C. 20515
    (202) 225-3130

    Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)
    Office of the Republican Leader
    H-204 The Capitol
    Washington, DC 20515
    Phone: (202) 225-4000
    Fax: (202) 225-5117

    Pres. Bush: comments@whitehouse.gov

    Horse tracks: http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/showfl...=0#Post12335695

    Democratic National Committee: http://www.democrats.org/contact.html

    Letters to the editor, Washington Post: letters@washpost.com
    Letters to the editor, New York Times: letters@nytimes.com
     
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  3. Here's my post-hearing letter to the Committee. I hope you'll all write to your congressman and senators about the hearing. Any opinions on the letter? Thanks.

    --------------------------------------

    November 21, 2007

    House Judiciary Committee
    2138 Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515

    Dear Chairman Conyers and the House Judiciary Committee:

    I am writing in response to the Committee’s Hearing on Establishing Consistent Enforcement Policies in the Context of Online Wagers. Specifically, I am writing concerning Rep. Bob Goodlatte’s statements that online gaming should be a state issue. I agree one hundred percent, which is why I disagree with Rep. Goodlatte position on this issue one hundred percent.

    Rep. Goodlatte said he favors leaving gaming law under the purview of the states, even with regard to online poker. He said (to Ms. Annie Duke):
    [indented in letter]“That is the whole point of the legislation that was passed, to enable individual states to enforce their laws regarding the laws that they have in those states.”

    However, he readily admitted at this hearing that his goal is to take from states the right to allow their residents to play interstate or international Internet poker. He said (again, to Ms. Annie Duke):
    [indented in letter]“But the fact of the matter is that I would like to have a ban on all interstate transactions with regard to betting. I would support any legislation that did that, but I will also support any legislation that goes as far as I can possibly take it to go, and that is exactly what the legislation we passed is.”

    One notable aspect of Internet poker as it exists today is that a large number of players are drawn from across the globe. This provides economies of scale and competition between sites, both of which keep costs down and quality up. The large player pool also allows for a superior product, as there are always many games of various types and stakes from which to choose. Rep. Goodlatte advocates taking this right from the states. In its place, he proposes forcing states that do not wish to prohibit their residents from playing Internet poker to set up in-state operations that may be far inferior to and more expensive than those obtainable in the broader market. As states can already make interstate Internet poker illegal within their borders, a federal ban on interstate Internet poker is unnecessary. Rep. Goodlatte has a piece of paper signed by forty-eight state attorneys general stating that they do not regulate or license Internet gaming, but only a handful of those states actually prohibit Internet poker. If these states wished to not have interstate Internet poker, they would have passed legislation prohibiting it, especially if they wanted the federal government to take the unusual step of enforcing it.

    Unlike bans like as the one Rep. Goodlatte advocates, both HR 2610, the Skill Game Protection Act (SGPA), and HR 2046, the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act (IGREA) respect and enhance the traditional rights of states to legislate gaming within its borders. SGPA clarifies that the Wire Act does not apply to Internet poker and other games of skill, thereby allowing states to decide if they will permit its residents to play online poker or not. IGREA respects the rights of states to determine what gaming it permits within its borders by permitting states to opt out. States only stand to gain with passage of these pieces of legislation.

    The bottom line is that I want to keep my right to play poker online. I am an American and I vote. Last year’s Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 woke up millions of other poker players just like me. We will all vote for their freedoms in 2008. I encourage the members of the Committee to listen to the voters and support SGPA and IGREA.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    Sincerely,

    TheEngineer
     
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  4. The government HAS to respond to all UIGEA comments. We have helpful comments from the Chamber of Commerce, the Center for Regulatory Effectiveness, pari-mutuel interests, and others. These have the potential to delay or to even change implementation of the regs, so please take a moment to comment on the regs.

    To comment on the proposed UIGEA regs:

    Click here to comment at the FRB site
    Click here to comment at the Treasury Dept site. Select &quot;DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY*&quot; at line 2 (the circled &quot;2&quot;), click submit, then click the comment icon to right of the UIGEA proposed rule. You can view the proposed regs at there as well.

    To review sumbitted comments:

    Clck here to view comments made to the Federal Reserve
    Click here to read UIGEA regulations comments at the Treasury Dept site. Select &quot;DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY*&quot;, click submit, then click the link to the far left of the UIGEA proposed rule (&quot;TREAS-DO-2007-0015&quot;).

    Again, detailed instructions are at http://pokerplayersalliance.org/pres...le.php?DID=293
     
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  5. my pre-hearing letter:

    November 12, 2007

    House Judiciary Committee
    2138 Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515

    Dear Chairman Conyers and the House Judiciary Committee:

    I am writing in regard to the upcoming “Hearing on Establishing Consistent Enforcement Policies in the Context of Online Wagers” to request that the committee review the unintended consequences of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA). Specifically, I request that the committee review the impact of the failure of UIGEA to define what types of Internet gaming are illegal to banks and to legal online gaming services.

    Our nation’s banks have been deputized by the federal government to enforce UIGEA. However, they have not been told what exactly they are to enforce. The draft UIGEA regulations specifically state that the regulation authors do not know what is illegal and what is not. If the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve are unable to determine what constitutes illegal Internet gambling, how can banks and other financial institutions be expected to? Surely this is an unfair burden to place on our nation’s financial institutions. After all, they are in the business of providing financial services, not of enforcing ambiguous gaming bans.

    Banks may choose to comply with these regulations by blocking all Internet gaming transactions. Foreseeing this, the regulation authors actually devised a term for this – “overblocking”. This overblocking could cause many problems for legitimate businesses, including the domestic horse racing industry, despite its specific exclusion from the provisions of the Act. Additionally, banks could overblock offshore poker sites that are not in violation of any federal or state law. As the United States recently lost its trade dispute (and its final appeal) with Antigua and Barbuda with regards to providing of cross-border betting services, additional restrictions via overblocking resulting from these regulations could result in increased WTO penalties, especially as domestic financial transactions are largely excluded from these regulations.

    I urge the committee to review this situation during the Internet gaming hearing and to carefully consider the need for clarifying legislation. There are two bills currently in the House that correct this situation. HR 2610, the Skill Game Protection Act, clarifies federal law by expressly exempting games of skill like poker from UIGEA. HR 2046, the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act, regulates online poker via stringent licensing regulations for poker site operators. Both bills have rigorous safeguards against underage and compulsive gambling. And, neither bill forces any state to permit online poker; states can opt out if they wish. I urge the committee to recommend passage of these bills to clarify UIGEA and the Wire Act. Our financial institutions deserve to know exactly what they are required to prevent.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    Sincerely,

    TheEngineer
     
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  6. Thanks for all your hard work, its much appreciated!
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  7. Thanks. I appreciate that.

    It's been very much a group effort. I look forward to continuing to take this fight to the opponents of freedom.
     
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  8. Wow. Huge post man; I support you.
    -Steve
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  9. Thanks Steve!

    Let's all win this fight.
     
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  10. Someone asked me what I thought our chances are. Here's my response:

    When UIGEA "passed" (i.e., was sneaked through the Senate, albeit after it sailed through the House), many poker sites abandoned America. The politicians who advocated it vowed to introduce legislation this year finish what UGIEA started. Dark days indeed. Fortunately, a few sites stayed here, determined to prove that the Wire Act does not apply to poker.

    We voted Rep. Leach out of office. His party lost power of Congress at the same time, giving us the starting point of a chance. Still, these were dark days. However, even when victory looked impossible, many poker players decided to fight back on general principle.

    Since then, things have improved. We have three bills in Congress and a WTO victory. We've had two hearings in Congress, the second of which FINALLY put word out our belief that the Wire Act does not apply to poker. While the DoJ claims it does, we made a good case, and we have an appeals court ruling backing us. ePassporte operates from CA with impunity, and Doyle's Room decided to come back to the U.S. market. Harrah's and MGM recently announced their belief that online poker will be explicitly legal in the U.S. within two years. And, the PPA matured a lot under more effective leadership. I was honored to join the PPA Board of Directors at that time to help focus the fight.

    From here, our main challenge right now is to keep from getting snared by UIGEA via overblocking, as banks have no reason to challenge the DoJ's interpretation of the Wire Act. Fortunately, we have allies posting challenges to the draft UIGEA regs. Other concerns are new legislation (our strong offensive has been a great defense for us), a judicial upholding of (or a refusal to hear a challenge to) the DoJ's position that the Wire Act applies to Internet poker, or a DoJ offensive on Internet poker.

    I have no way of predicting our likelihood of success, but I can tell you it's much higher than it was six months ago, for sure. I've always said we're underdogs in our struggle, but I'm starting to believe we're now better than 50-50. I do know that if can increase our chances by fighting back. We're certainly stronger than other Internet gaming, mainly because they didn't fight back as effectively as we did. So, I encourage everyone to keep fighting back.

    Americans should keep on their congressmen. Europeans can write to EU trade officials to demand that they settle their WTO claims against the U.S. with Inernet gaming concessions, rather than with non-gaming service concessions. If we all do our part, I think we have a really good shot at this. If we let up even a little, I think we'll fail. So, let's all do our part!
     
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  11. Just imagine!.......I'm a nurse in Louisiana &amp; for playing $0.50 poker games on AP, I could lose my license if convicted of a felony!!!!!! AMAZING!
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  12. Here are some articles you may find interesting:
     
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  13. If you've not written to Congress in the past month, please go to http://capwiz.com/pokerplayersallian...46&amp;type=co right now to send one. Sending it really takes less than one minute. When you do, please post here to acknowledge it, to encourage others to follow your lead. Thanks!
     
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  14. Outrageous! I guess the gov't has nothing else to worry about besides what we do in our own homes.
     
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  15. <SPAN class=postbody>Our opponents are going too far in the advocacy of big government to force their vision of what America should be. The latest assault on our freedoms, of course, was UIGEA, a bill that purported to ban Internet gaming. Focus on the Family has pushed hard for a national gaming prohibition, of course, because they think our values come from D.C. Like the mullahs in Iran, they look to government to strip us of our freedoms.

    Two weeks ago, a House committee held a hearing on Internet poker, at http://judiciary.house.gov/oversight.aspx?ID=396 (click &quot;video webcast). An amusing dialog occurred between FoF's Tom McClusky and Rep. Steven Cohen of Tennessee (at around 3:33:45 of the video):

    [following McClusky's advocacy of a total gaming prohibition in the U.S.]
    Rep. Steven Cohen: Is there any fun that you’re for? [laughter in background]
    Tom McClusky: Any what?
    Rep. Steven Cohen: Fun.
    Tom McClusky: Umm...well, we’re for this, and this seems like a lot of fun.
    Rep. Steven Cohen: Hearings?
    Tom McClusky: [no response...laughter in background]
    Rep. Steven Cohen: Good, good.

    I'll start calling FoF Foes of Fun! LOL. </SPAN>
     
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  16. I'm a member of Focus on the Family, and I'm an online poker player.

    Obviously I don't agree with their stance on this particular item, but to compare them to the mullahs of Iran is ridiculous. Focus and Dr. Dobson have seen millions of people ruin their lives through gambling. And however you want to color it, there is most definitely a gambling aspect to online poker. You can't criticize them out of hand like this when you yourself don't give a crap about those who lose every penny they have playing online poker...and there are many.

    Should they be responsible for their own actions? Sure, but I don't think a well-meaning attempt to help people avoid that fate by Focus translates into them being some group that is trying to trample on all of your "freedoms." Remember also that lots of non-religious groups want to do away with online poker in the US also.

    The biggest problem for online poker in the US is not groups like Focus, it is the concerns about the security and regulation of the games. The Absolute situation, and questions about the security of all non-regulated sites, will play a much bigger role in determining online poker's ultimate future in the US.
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  17. The mullahs of Iran pass laws probiting behaviors that they think are sinful, which is what Dr. Dobson is doing. I respect your opinion, but I don't think it's an unreasonable comparison, especially as gambling is not listed as a sin anywhere in the Bible (i.e., Dobson made it up). I understand you disagree, but I think we have a right to be angry at those who'd take our freedoms from us. That's why America exists in the first place.

    Focus was THE driving force behind UIGEA. Sorry, but that's the truth. They are our biggest problem right now. I respect their right to ask their own members to refrain from gaming. I don't respect their right to stop ME from gaming. That's the difference.

    Yes, people should be responsible for their own actions. The addiction argument is a canard raised by anti-gaming activists. The truth is that recent studies have shown that less than 1% of gamblers develop addictions. Why should government stop the rest of us from participating in an activity we enjoy? And, despite your assertion that I "don't give a crap" about these people, both the Frank bill and the Wexler bill contain requirements for creation of self-exclusion lsits and for treatment of people with issues. I recognize that you think "caring" means passing new laws, but prohibition does nothing for these folks.

    Explicit legalization and the subsequent onshoring of the industry will do far more for the integrity for the industry than UIGEA ever will as well.

    Cheers.
     
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  18. "Dobson have seen millions of people ruin their lives through gambling."

    Millions? Can you cite this for me?
     
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  19. You can go to ANY casino and lose every penny quicker than you can lose it online. Casinos have caused many, many more people to go bankrupt/broke/etc.., im sure more than you could even fathom a guess at. Vegas has ruined peoples lives, and it has made peoples lives, its just the nature of the game, not everyone can win. Its not up to the government to decide whether the people of this country are responsible enough to not go overboard. The bottom line is the majority of people who do play online do it for enterainment, and would like to enjoy their hard earned money.

    Its not the nature of the government in the first place to be so concerned about each and every individual who happens to lose some money, this has never been the case and never will be no matter how they sugarcoat it. The government is primarily concerned with THEIR money, and if they arent getting any, its not going to fly. I think you need to quit concerning yourself with these fluke, uncontrollable instances - this is too idealistic to play any practical role in helping decide the future of online poker. If the government gets their cut of the loot, thats all that is going to matter.
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  20. Well said Jeremy. Many of these people "care" so much that they wish to have a society that outlaws everything they don't think sounds Christian to them. Then, they act like we can't complain, claiming that we're anti-Christian for speaking out. Well, I'm pro-freedom, so I'll speak out. I see you are as well, so I thank you as well.

    And, LOL at the idea that we cannot even say anything about Dobson because of the AP scandal. These guys always act like they can change the subject, be it operators, nonexistent "terrorist financing" and money laundering, or addiction rates that have no correlation with reality.

    These people hate freedom. They don't trust it and they don't like it. Just like the mullahs in Iran.
     
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  21. "These people hate freedom. They don't trust it and they don't like it. Just like the mullahs in Iran."

    Yeah, I don't know why anyone would label you as "anti-Christian."
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  22. "These people hate freedom. They don't trust it and they don't like it. Just like the mullahs in Iran."

    Yeah, I don't know why anyone would label you as "anti-Christian."


    Nor do I. You think disagreeing with Dobson makes someone "anti-Christian"? How? Dobson isn't Christ, and the majority of Christians aren't out trying to pass laws regulating people's behaviors. Just because he claims he's doing something because he's a Christian doesn't make criticizing his actions anti-Christian.
     
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  23. I've listened to Dobson my whole life. You obviously have no idea what the man believes, to say he "hates" freedom.

    GL with your crusade, I'm not going to argue this with you. I'm just saying, your efforts are misguided. Unless it comes onshore, which probably won't happen, online poker is probably going away. This is because of the lack of regulation, security, and the potential for these sites to rob people of millions of dollars.

    Scratch potential, it already happened. The bottom line is nobody knows if the games are secure and legit, on any site, and nobody knows how to make it where we can know they ever will be. That alone makes the future of online poker cloudier than any religious group could possibly affect it.
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  24. "I've listened to Dobson my whole life. You obviously have no idea what the man believes, to say he "hates" freedom."

    Well, let's see. FoF wants to ban gambling, even poker (even unraked home games). They want to ban alcohol. They want to criminalize homosexuality (I'm happily hetero, but the existence of gays doesn't impact or invalidate my heterosexuality at all). They want to ban sex-ed in favor of teaching abstinence only. They want to ban teaching of evolution in public schools. They want to ban stem-cell research. They aren't exactly fans of birth control pills. They want to ban pornography. They want to censor speech on television, cable, and the Internet. They want to shut down all strip clubs. They aren't fans of nightclubs at all, and they work at local levels against them, at least for hours and zoning. They support blue laws against buying alcohol on Sundays in any state they can. They oppose easy divorce processes. They oppose abortion [I do as well. Oh yeah, I am a pro-life, right wing Christian Republican, but I'm a libertarian (small "L")...I don't wish to force my opinions on others....I object strongly to Dobson because of his statism.]. That's all I can think of for now, but I think it's clear that Dobson thinks government should enforce values on others. Last time I checked, that was the opposite of freedom.

    "GL with your crusade, I'm not going to argue this with you. I'm just saying, your efforts are misguided. Unless it comes onshore, which probably won't happen, online poker is probably going away. This is because of the lack of regulation, security, and the potential for these sites to rob people of millions of dollars."

    Wishful thinking on your part, I believe. I believe we'll either get explicitly legalized, or we'll be strong enough to keep from getting banned. The free market will self-correct issues like the AP scandal.
     
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  25. Anyone who questions FoF's commitment against us merely has to read their Action site, at www.citizenlink.org/FOSI/gambling/A000004244.cfm.

    They've really worked very hard to line up politicians to work against us. This is a HUGE issue for them. Somehow we're not supposed to speak up or something. Sorry, but I'll speak against this, loudly and clearly!
     
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  26. Dobson should focus on his own god damn family and stay out of other folks business.
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  27. As an example, here's the letter I sent to Rep. Bachus after the June 8 House Financial Services Committee hearing:

    June 13, 2007
    The Honorable Spencer Bachus
    2246 Rayburn Building
    Washington, D.C. 20515

    Dear Congressman Bachus:

    I’m writing in response to last Friday’s House Financial Services Committee hearing on Internet gambling (June 8, 2007: Can Internet Gambling Be Effectively Regulated to Protect Consumers and the Payments System?). I was very impressed with quality of the hearing, especially with the witnesses who testified in favor of regulated Internet gambling. I felt the expert testimony of Michael Colopy of Aristotle Inc, Jon Prideaux of Asterion Payments, and Gerald Kitchen of SecureTrading Ltd. proved that Internet gambling can be regulated effectively (and has been successfully regulated in Britain). This pleased me, as I do share your concerns for underage gambling, compulsive gambling, and other issues. Fortunately, this is an issue we can effectively address with technology and regulation, rather than with a “feel good” unconstitutional prohibition. America is far better off with effective regulation than with a prohibition that relies on banks to snoop through our financial transactions and Internet service providers to snoop through our Internet usage history.

    Further, I concurred completely with Radley Balko of Reason Magazine (and a regular Foxnews.com contributor) in that what Americans do in their own homes with their own money is their own business. As a limited-government conservative in the tradition of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan, I am distressed by the amount of government intrusion in our daily lives. I think many Americans feel the same way. In fact, it pains me to see our party acting as the agent of big government. I imagine you will consider the validity of Mr. Balko’s points relative to our freedoms and liberties, as I know you are a man who believes in these core American values regardless of your personal opinions concerning Internet poker.

    Speaking of Mr. Balko, I was perplexed by your question to him concerning Ross Boatman and his biography on the FullTilt Poker web site. You seemed very concerned that, as a youth, Mr. Boatman played poker with his brother at the kitchen table, likely for pennies, baseball cards, or valueless chips used simply to keep score. Certainly you were not suggesting passing federal legislation to prevent brothers from playing poker at the kitchen table, were you? I certainly hope not, but one never knows, given recent Congressional history. Were you suggesting that Mr. Boatman was playing on the Internet with his brother when he was twelve? Aside from the age verification software present on all online gaming sites, certainly you understand no site ever permitted more than one player from the same IP address to play in the same poker game, due to collusion. I assume you do, as you claim expertise in this area. Also, as Mr. Boatman is in his 40s, he would have been twelve back in the pre-Internet 1970s. Anyway, regardless of the point you were trying to make, fortunately for Mr. Boatman this was prior to the current era of big government Republicanism. Also fortunate for Mr. Boatman, he grew up in England, where poker is not seen as something the national government has any business trying to prevent its citizens from enjoying. As such, he was able to play poker for pennies at his kitchen table with his brother without federal intrusion.

    As for the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, you noted that it does not make any gambling illegal that was not already illegal. Rather, it provides legal mechanisms for enforcement of existing state and federal gambling laws. Well, Internet poker is not illegal under existing federal law. As for state laws, very few states have outlawed Internet poker. Conversely, the vast majority of states permit online “games of skill” (such as the money skill games on yahoo.com and other sites that are not affected by UIGEA), and I think we can agree that professional players like Doyle Brunson are certainly skilled. It seems that if states wished to ban Internet poker, it seems they would have done so in an unambiguous fashion … especially if they wished to have the federal government enforce it.

    HR 2046 provides real regulation, rather than a porous prohibition. A regulated Internet gambling environment will facilitate age verification and collection of federal and state taxes. It will also reduce any potential vulnerability of gambling websites to being used for money laundering, drug trafficking, or terrorist financing. With regulation, potential problems can be controlled without taking freedoms from Americans. After all, Russians and Eastern Europeans can gamble online; it seems the U.S. should trust its citizens at least as much as Russia trusts theirs, right?

    Proponents of online gambling prohibition often mention endorsements UIGEA received from some in the religious community, some family groups, some financial services groups and some professional sports organizations. I hope you’ll consider the fact that these groups do not necessarily represent the majority of voters in our nation (or even the majority of Alabama Republicans). As for religious and family groups, there is no prohibition against gambling in the Bible, as was noted at the hearing. As a Christian, I personally find it offensive that some in the religious community are willing to give away our freedoms in pursuit of a goal not even defined in the Bible. As for financial services groups, some credit card issuers may like UIGEA (due only to the risk of losing players refusing to pay up), but I do not believe banks wish to be the enforcers of UIGEA. As a result, I think you’ll find financial services groups to be net losers as a result of UIGEA. Finally, I believe the concerns of the major professional sports organizations you mentioned relate only to sports betting. As HR 2046 permits them to opt out, this concern has been addressed.

    In closing, I urge you to reconsider your strong opposition to allowing Americans to make their own decisions concerning playing poker in their own homes via the Internet. Online gambling will continue to exist with or without the participation of the United States. We’re losing our opportunity to control the games via regulation as well as the opportunities for U.S. companies to operate the games both domestically and internationally. This is costing America jobs and tax revenue.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    Sincerely,

    TheEngineer
     
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  28. This is all a waste of time and effort. Until a solution can be presented that addresses each lawmakers concerns any bill presented is going be defeated...
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  29. I respect the hard work and devotion put in this by you and yours. Online poker in its state right now this very moment is questionable among other things. The way it stands right now IMHO w/o online poker being properly regulated it will not be approved so if the ruling goes south it won't be a big surprise. I really love online poker and the poker community as it's alot of fun, I can't say that I like the fact thats its not regulated and ran by costa ricans or whomever that dont really look out for their customers best interests...just theirs. I hope that we win this as I support you sir , but this has to be checked and double checked before this flies. Much Respect
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  30. *replies without reading other posts*

    *repeats what Engineer just said*

    He didn't say this: You know James Dobson makes over a hundred million a year off your sheep ass don't you?
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