03/16/2012 : Online poker enthusiasts’ run of luck has run out.
Sen. Jeff Danielson's bill SF2257 seeking to legalise online gambling in the state of Iowa appears to have ended its remarkable legislative journey, run aground on the rocks of a House committee due to a ‘general lack of interest', according to the Republican committee chief, Kraig Paulsen.
The local newspaper The Gazette reports that Paulsen is disinclined to progress the bill further through his House State Government Committee, and it is therefore likely to run afoul of Friday's procedural deadline.
Earlier this week the state Senate passed the bill after a mere ten minute discussion, achieving a 29 to 20 bipartisan vote, but Paulsen commented Thursday that there was little interest in the bill among his 60-strong GOP caucus.
“What are we in? Week 10?” Paulsen said. “I don’t know if I’ve had three members mention this subject to me … until this week when the big hub-bub was.”
He added that he had not received any pressure from House Republicans or the lobby to move the bill, and there were not enough GOP votes to move it forward.
Rep. Peter Cownie, said Wednesday that he would schedule a committee meeting for late Thursday in anticipation of SF 2257 being read in when the House convened Thursday morning. Although the bill was introduced, the State Government Committee failed to meet, almost certainly condemning the bill to failure.
Receiving the bill on the final day of House action before the Legislature’s funnel deadline did not give the chamber time to act on legalising online poker, Paulsen said.
March 16 is the Legislature’s self-imposed deadline for non-money measures to clear one legislative chamber and a committee of the other to remain eligible for consideration this session.