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PPA Has $3 Million Lobbying Budget For 2009
The chairman of the Poker Players Association, former Senator Alphonse D'Amato, told Associated Press this week that the pressure group has a lobbying budget of $3 million that it will devote to overturning the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, or deploy to at the very least carve out an exemption that would legalise and regulate online poker.
D'Amato says his organisation plans to spend the $3 million on lobbying in this session of Congress, and that the generous funding comes from the Interactive Gaming Council, a Vancouver, British Columbia-based trade association for online casinos, as well as from its poker player members.
The PPA is up against some tough and well-heeled competition, D'Amato pointed out. The National Football League says gambling threatens the integrity of its games and has made preserving the Internet ban a priority in Washington. Last year, the league hired a full-time lobbyist and started a political action committee to make campaign donations.
At least half the $16 billion Internet gambling industry, which is largely hosted on overseas sites, is estimated to be fueled by bettors in the United States, Associated Press informs.
D'Amato lost his re-election race to Democrat Chuck Schumer in 1998. Since then a lot of poker playing has moved to the Internet.
“How dare you come into my house and tell me what I can and can't do on the Internet!” D'Amato said in his interview with the news service. “It's a cause for personal choice and freedom that I've always thought epitomizes what this country's about."
However, the NFL apparently sees things differently.
“We are opposed to more gambling on our games which is what would occur if the 2006 [UIGEA] law was overturned,” league spokesman Brian McCarthy told the Associated Press writer.
“We understand that illegal gambling currently occurs but there is little we can do about that,” he added. “However, we can exercise our right to oppose Internet betting on our games. ... Gambling on our games – online or offline – threatens the integrity of our games and all the values they represent.”
Other sports leagues have backed the UIGEA ban, including the NCAA and professional baseball, basketball and hockey, although the NFL has spearheaded opposition to attempts to overturn the contentious law. The Christian Coalition is also reported to be lobbying to preserve the ban.
D'Amato said he had no problem with letting leagues ban betting on their games, but argued that online poker should be legal.
He argued that the UIGEA didn't provide a clear definition of unlawful Internet gambling, instead referring to existing federal and state laws, which themselves provoke differing interpretations.
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Amaya FY2016 Trading Update -
The Montreal-based Amaya online gambling group has issued a trading update covering FY 2016 and improving its forecast revenue and earnings numbers.
LeoVegas To Sponsor Leicester Tigers -
The agreement includes official partner accreditation, media space at Welford Road stadium and matchday tickets and VIP hospitality as well as two pitchside perimeter boards from the 2017/18 season and one for duration of the 2016/17 season.
Optima Information Services iShop -
Industry visitors to the recent TVC Bookmakers Trade Fair in Solihull, UK were much taken by Spanish betting technology firm Optima Information Services' iShop product, and the company went on to win the SBC Best Retail Betting Product award with it last month.
CAGAYAN CHIEF MOVES TO REASSURE LICENSEES -
Apparently $4 million is going into improvements of the Authority’s data centre in the Freeport at Cagayan, whilst another $3 million has been earmarked for an upgrade to data infrastructure located outside the Freeport.
New Massachusetts Online Gambling Bill -
It seems that every two years (give or take a few months) Massachusetts state Senator Bruce Tarr flights an online gambling legalization bill in the state Senate.
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