Sometimes when the same old tone you’ve been screaming in is being ignored, you can get a lot accomplished with a clear word from a different voice. That is exactly what Senators John Kyl and Harry Reid hope to accomplish by involving the Junior Senator from Nevada, Republican Dean Heller, in their efforts to get their US online poker Bill passed at the national level. While he is the Junior Senator in that state, Heller is a respected Republican. Reid (Dem) and Kyl (Rep) have entrusted Heller with creating support on the Republican level.
Acting as an informational envoy, Heller is one of only a few people who understand the intricate details that Reid and Kyl have developed which would call for federal online poker regulation in the US. The two senators who have been pushing for federal oversight of US online poker policy believe that Heller is just the right man for the job to get the word out to his fellow Republican lawmakers. And for a young, up-and-coming politician like Heller, bringing together the oft-disagreeing Republican and Democratic parties over this matter could be a huge win for not only US online poker players, but also his political future.
Republican lawmakers and politicians on the state and federal levels generally are not as a group pro online poker. Obviously Nevada representatives like Reid are happy to tout the positive aspects of a safe and responsible online poker environment, since Nevada is unquestionably the brick-and-mortar gambling center of the United States. And the reason Reid and Kyl are pushing so hard and so fast to see their bill passed in 2012 centers around the activities of Nevada and Delaware.
As soon as the United States Department of Justice reversed their opinion that online poker was illegal in December of last year, both those states adopted legislation legalizing online poker play. Reid believes that each day that passes puts more states closer to adopting their own legislation just as Nevada and Delaware have, and that will make it harder for federal policy to be passed.
Heller is wasting no time in his new role as pro-online poker emissary to the Republican Party. He has already contacted Senators John Cornyn, Mitch McConnell and Roy Blunt, all members of the Republican leadership delegation. Heller knows Blunt from the time they both served in the House. Doing a little arm twisting on the Republican level heading into a contentious presidential race may be just what Kyl and Reid need to get the required number of votes for passage of 2012 federal online poker policy in the US.