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Write Your Congressman!

You Can Make a Difference


Today's message is short and sweet. We have to be a force to be reckoned with. Every member of Congress needs to know that we American citizens do not like it when our freedoms are taken away from us, especially when it is done in the sneaky manner in which the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) was passed.

As you may know, the office of US Congressman Barney Frank, D-Mass, who is chairman of the House financial services committee, has confirmed that he is currently working on legislation to repeal the UIGEA.

Last year, Representative Frank addressed Congress and answered a charge that online gambling does not add to the GDP or make America more competitive. (A region's GDP, or gross domestic product, is one of the ways for measuring the size of its economy.)

Representative Frank responded: "Has it become the role of this Congress to prohibit any activity that an adult wants to engage in voluntarily if it doesn't add to the GDP or make us more competitive? What kind of social, cultural, authoritarianism are we advocating here? Now, I agree there is a practice that causes a lot of problems, damages families, people lose their jobs, they get in debt, they do it to excess. It's called drinking! Are we going to go back to Prohibition? It didn't work back then and it won't work for gambling. … The fundamental point is this, if an adult in this country, with their own money, wants to engage in an activity that harms no one, how dare we prohibit it?"

I think we all agree with Representative Frank's sentiment. How dare the government prohibit our fun while sanctioning the lottery, horseracing, fantasy sports leagues? Let's help the good senator get support from other senators.

The Poker Player's Alliance has graciously provided us with a link whereby you can join the PPA and you can also write your senator. Click here.

In the recent past, we interviewed Congresswoman Shelley Berkley on our radio show. She told us to contact our congressmen! Let's take this sage advice and get excited. It only takes a few minutes of typing. Click here.

We do have allies in congress. Representative John Conyers, D-Mich, chairman of the House judiciary committee, is a long-time supporter and sympathetic to the industry. Reps. Shelley Berkley, D-Nev., and Jon Porter, R-Nev., intend to cosponsor legislation for a study and they have already approached Rep. Barney Frank for support.

American Gaming Association president Frank Fahrenkopf is also in favor of a study to determine the viability of regulating online gaming. With all due respect to those who want a study, the new voice of poker and PPA spokesman Senator Alfonse put it best when he said "Study, schmudy. It will take years and then we will study the study. We need action now."

Senator Alfonse D'Amato suggests that we let our voices be heard. Let's make some noise! Get a phone number, write a letter. Let your representatives know how displeased you are! The link we have provided also gives phone numbers for your representatives. Be courteous, but leave a message that you do not appreciate your freedoms being taken away. Don't ramble. Make your point. Repeal the UIGEA or give us a poker carve-out. Click here.

Tags: poker law