Poker Players Alliance (PPA) Chairman Alfonse D'Amato, criticized the Hill articles this week for wrongfully suggesting that the issue of regulating online gaming is partisan in nature. The Hill article in question, "Frank's online gaming bill was authored by Kevin Bogardus for the April 2nd, 2009 edition of the Hill, a newspaper that publishes the activities of the Congress. D'Amato responded to the article with a letter to the editor on April 14th, 2009.
D'Amato said that Representative Barney Frank's upcoming poker bill, which will likely be introduced in the next few weeks in the congress, has bi-partisan support stating that both liberals and conservatives in and out of the House of Representatives are opposed to the UIGEA for numerous reasons like it does nothing to prevent minors and gaming addicts from playing online, it burdens financial institutions like banks and not the government, it costs tax payers billions of dollars in unearned profit and loss of capital and employment opportunities when these companies are forced to leave the US gaming market.
While the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act was supported by a handful of Republican legislators, it is very difficult to decide if some members of the Congress would have voted with their party when it comes to online gaming. The UIGEA was included to a vital must pass legislation in 2006, the SAFE Port Act which encountered no criticism. It was passed unanimously by the Senate and House of Representatives.
Representative Frank's proposal, which would regulate online gaming like poker, will be a stand-along bill. Both supporters and critics of the online gambling are eager to discuss the issue. D'Amato said that April 2nd, 2009 article of Bogardus wrongly classified the issue as a battle among party lines.
D'Amato further stated in his letter that the Poker Players Alliance was a co-sponsor of the recent Conservative Political Action Conference where World Series of Poker Champion Greg Raymer spoke on behalf of all poker players. D'Amato also said that UIGEA blatantly ignored several important principles that a lot of people viewed as important like online freedom, personal freedom and limited government.