When the US Department of Justice (DoJ) announced in Dec 2011 that only sports events and competitions come under the ambit of the Wire Act of 1961, a floodgate of opportunities opened for US states. Several states began making studies on how regulated poker could increase the state’s revenue.
Nevada, California, New Jersey, and Delaware have already initiated the process of regulating online poker within their geographical limits. The Gaming Commission of Nevada approved regulated intrastate poker in Nevada and began accepting applications from online poker site operators who wished to launch online poker businesses in Nevada.
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California proposed a bill called SB 1463, which is waiting for approval. It aims at protecting poker players and promises to raise revenue of $200 million for the state. Besides, Bwin.party has struck a partnership deal with the United Auburn Indian Community, the owner of Thunder Valley Casino Resort, which puts the two companies in a position to grab a share of the Californian online poker market as soon as the state regulates online poker.
New Jersey is expected to approve its Internet Gaming Bill on May 31, and in Delaware, Governor Jack Markell favors the Delaware Gaming Competitiveness Act 2012, which will be introduced into the legislature for approval this session.
Besides, a number of US states such as Iowa, Washington D.C., Massachusetts, Hawaii, and Mississippi that tried to regulate their online poker industry, but failed are planning to try once more.
At the same time, Utah is very much against the legalization and regulation of the online poker industry. Governor Gary R. Herbert approved the Anti Online Gambling Bill this March, and it will become law on July 1. According to this law, the state of Utah will not accept even federal laws permitting online gaming.
US states such as Illinois, Connecticut, New York, Maryland, Virginia, and Ohio are open to regulating online poker in the near future.
About the legalization of US online poker, Chris Moneymaker, the champion of the WSOP 2003 Main Event, said, “Online poker will be back in the US; its not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. There’s just too much money to be made. PokerStars, with the way they handled things, I think there’s a good chance they’ll be back. I have 100 percent belief there will be regulated online poker in the US and I have a very strong belief that PokerStars will be part of that landscape.”

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