Presidential Candidate Marco Rubio Says Poker Has A 'Level Of Skill'
Florida Senator Still Thinks Other Casino Games On Web Are Wrong
Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio is currently campaigning in South Carolina and in a town hall meeting this past weekend reiterated his position on real-money online gaming.
According to Breitbart News, Rubio said in response to a question about online gaming, which GOP mega-donor Sheldon Adelson has long opposed because he thinks it hurts his brick-and-mortar business:
“I’m very concerned about expanding gaming online,” Rubio said. “What I don’t want to see is Internet casinos, because I have seen gambling addiction ruin families, I have seen gambling expansion ruin people’s lives.”
The silver lining is that Rubio also cemented his position that poker is different because it has a “level of skill.” It was revealed last fall that the Senator from Florida was open to an online poker carve-out for the Adelson-backed legislation dubbed RAWA.
Rubio’s grasp of poker’s distinction from other casino games might not matter much, though.
Fortunately, the RAWA proposal is drawing basically dead after a December hearing that was supposed to be biased against online poker went the other way and turned into a public showcase of why regulation of online poker is a better idea.
At the request of state lotteries, the Department of Justice issued an opinion in late 2011 that re-interpreted the 1961 Wire Act so that intrastate online gaming wouldn’t violate federal law.
Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware are the only states currently regulating online casino gaming, while California, Pennsylvania and New York are seriously considering it.
Even though Rubio is a RAWA co-sponsor, his views on poker appear much more sensible than an executive at daily fantasy sports site FanDuel who recently said that poker is “much more a chance-dominated game than a skill-dominated game.”
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