Despite appearances to the contrary, the lobbying group Poker Players Alliance (PPA) now claims that the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act (or H.R. 2267), which recently passed through the subcommittee stage in the U.S. House of Representatives, would no preemptively bar Poker Stars from obtaining a license to operate under the new American gambling laws.
In an apparent compromise with federal lawmakers, two clauses within H.R. 2267 would seem to make companies currently in violation of the overarching Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) unable to receive licensing for internet casinos or online poker sites in the U.S under the new law. As Rep. Brad Sherman (D.-Calif.), author of these amendments, recently explained to the Las Vegas Sun, “Al Capone couldn’t [have gotten] a liquor license if he’d stayed around to the end of Prohibition.”
Big names like Poker Stars and Full Tilt Poker, which continue to do business in the U.S. despite the current gray area of U.S. online gambling law, were specifically bandied about when the amendments were first proposed for inclusion in the anti-UIGEA bill H.R. 2267.
However, the recent statement from the PPA puts Poker Stars in the clear, “despite the concerns of some of our members, nothing in the Committee-passed legislation precludes lawful Internet poker-only operators whom U.S. players know and trust today from the opportunity to operate under a regulated system.”