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New York Lawmaker On State's Online Poker Efforts: 'We Are Going To Get It Done'

Assemblyman Gary Pretlow Still Pushing For Regulation


In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on sports betting, a top New York State lawmaker says online poker will eventually become regulated.

In an interview with FiOS1 News, New York Assemblyman Gary Pretlow, chair of a state gambling committee, said that sports betting could kick off this summer in the Empire State and online poker legalization could soon follow.

“I think we are going to get [online poker] done,” Pretlow said.

For several years, New York has tried to legalize and regulate real-money online poker sites. The Senate has approved online poker legislation, but there has always been a hang-up in the Assembly. According to Pretlow, some of his colleagues still see poker as gambling and that has made it difficult to bring to the internet.

New York has Las Vegas-style casinos, but, unlike some other states, lawmakers have not considered online slots or online table games in addition to traditional, peer-to-peer poker.

Pretlow said that sports betting will be “helpful” for online poker, but he admitted that right now sports betting is viewed as a more lucrative opportunity for the state’s gambling industry. Sports betting is a larger market nationwide.

“For whatever reason, people consider online poker to be gambling but don’t consider sports betting to be gambling. I’m going to show them this is all gaming, and all forms of gaming happening are related,” Pretlow said.

Check out Pretlow’s extended interview with FiOS1 News here.