PPA seeking poker exemption to UIGEA

6 April 2010
The Poker Players Alliance (PPA) has approached Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) in hopes of creating an exemption for online poker before regulations enforcing the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) go into effect on June 1st.

PPA Executive Director John Pappas told Poker News Daily that his organization will present a petition that attempts to exclude peer-to-peer games from being included in the final implementation of the UIGEA rules.

Pappas and the PPA know it will be a tough sell to get Kyl on board. Kyl is a longtime opponent of online gambling.

"We need to get Jon Kyl to agree to this revision," said Pappas. "It wouldn't seek to delay the law, but it would clearly exempt poker and pari-mutuel dog and horse racing."

The UIGEA regulations were originally slated to go into effect last December, but they were put on hold for six months by Treasure Secretary Timothy Geithner and U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke when some legislators asked for a delay.

Kyl, who helped pass the UIGEA in 2006 along with former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) by including it into a port security bill, prevented confirmation of President Barack Obama's Treasury appointments in retaliation for delaying the implementation of UIGEA regulations.

Pappas told Poker News Daily that he believes Kyl is mainly interested in seeing that his law gets passed.

"I don't think it comes down to Kyl having an axe to grind with poker players," he said. "I think he'd be open to a legislative solution, but he wants to get his law enforced."

House Financial Services Committee spokesman Steve Adamske said that it was too early to speculate whether UIGEA regulations would be delayed again.

"We'll be doing another hearing on the regulation delay bill," he told Poker News Daily. "We would like to do it soon."