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PPA Director: ‘Payroll Tax Extension Bill Probably Not Right Vehicle for Internet Poker’

Written by:
Gilbert Horowitz
Published on:
Feb/14/2012
PPA Director:  ‘Payroll Tax Extension Bill Probably Not Right Vehicle for Intern

A lot of excitement is building in the online poker community with news that a Payroll Tax Extension bill could be passed within the week.  There has been much speculation that Senate Leader Harry Reid and Arizona Republican Senator Jon Kyl might attempt to attach an amendment to legalize Web poker by strengthening current prohibition, The Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA).

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While it appears the two Senators have joined forced to draft a measure, Poker Players Alliance Director of Grassroots and External Affairs Drew Lesofski, who has been intricately involved in the fight for online poker on Capitol Hill, told PocketFives on Tuesday that Internet poker’s inclusion in this particular bill is highly unlikely, and went on to explain why:

Lesofski revealed that he had talked to the Nevada Congressional delegation, but not Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s office, and was told that the payroll tax bill is “probably not the correct vehicle” because House Speaker John Boehner and Reid want the final product to be as clean as possible.

Still, there is reason to be optimistic. 

Lesofski believes that an upcoming  Unemployment Extension bill could be the right vehicle for the online poker attachment, assuming such a measure is independent of the Payroll Tax Extension legislation.  He also readily admitted that the situation remains fluid and anything is possible by the time the Payroll Tax Extension measure hits the floor for a vote.  Closed door meetings were scheduled throughout Monday evening. 

Unlike the Payroll Tax Extension bill, extending unemployment appeals less to Republicans and might not pass on its own.  It was not immediately clear as of early Tuesday evening whether unemployment extension, which is expected to cost approximately $50 billion, would remain part of the Payroll Tax Extension bill and paid for with spending offsets elsewhere in the budget.

- Gilbert Horowitz, Gambling911.com

 

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