The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs is set to tackle the issue of online poker in the United States in a hearing on Thursday.
The hearing, entitled “Regulation of Tribal Gaming: From Brick & Mortar to the Internet,” is the latest chance for the issue of online gaming to be heard in the U.S. legislature, after several other committee hearings have also addressed the subject in recent years. Thursday’s hearing will take place in the Dirksen Building, room G50, at 2:15 p.m. Eastern. A webcast of the hearing is expected to be shown on the committee website here.
A bill that would regulate online poker in the United States is reportedly being worked on by senators Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), although this hearing will take place without knowing the details of that bill, as it has not yet been submitted to Congress. There has been speculation in recent days that tribal interests in the U.S. may draft their own bill on online poker; here’s an excerpt from a pokernews.com report:
“I think the timing [of the hearing] is around the idea that Indian tribes are interested in drafting their own legislation,” said John Pappas, executive director of the Poker Players Alliance. “They want to stake a claim to the process and feel that the best way for them to assert their interests is through their own bill.”
The witness list for the hearing includes Tracie Stevens, chairwoman for the National Indian Gaming Commission; Bruce ”Two Dogs” Bozsum, chairman of the Mohegan Tribe in Connecticut; Glen Gobin, secretary for the Tulalip Tribes of Washington; Jamie Hummingbird, chairperson of the National Tribal Gaming Commissioners/Regulators; Elizabeth Homer, an attorney with Homer Law, in Washington, D.C.; Jon Porter, a former congressman and president of Porter Gordon Silver Communications in Las Vegas; and Eugene Johnson, senior vice president of marketing and online studies for the Spectrum Gaming Group.