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California Online Poker Bill Delayed But Not Dead

July 1, 2010 (CAP News Wire) – Although some media sources are reporting that California Senator Rod Wright’s efforts to legalize Internet gambling in the Golden State (Senate Bill 1485,) are dead, the truth is that the plan is only on hold while the lawmaker (and his allies) work to figure out a better way of presenting the legislation to win more support.

Saying the bill is “down, not out”, the Desert Sun’s Debra Gruszecki writes that the Legislation “is still a work in progress.”

Wright’s bill was a longshot from the beginning, Gruszecki claims (although it wasn’t always seen that way). The fact that the state’s powerful gambling-invested Indian tribes opposed the legislation was a good indicator that it wasn’t going anywhere fast.

But that doesn’t mean it’s dead, or even “off the table” as NBC Los Angeles states.

“It’s not a dead process,” said Wright, in an article at the Press-Enterprise. “Just because we don’t do this today doesn’t mean people are going to stop playing Internet poker.”

“The good thing about urgency bills is you can continue to amend them,” Gruszecki quotes Wright. “I will prevail on the leadership of this building to try to move something; if we don’t, we’ll start again in the next session.”

And it’s not that the Tribes are completely opposed to online poker regulation. It is, in fact, something they want, albeit in their own way.

“We have a bill in front of us,” Patrick Dorinson, spokesman for the California Tribal Intrastate Internet Poker Consortium, was quoted in California’s Capitol Weekly. “We have people that want to work together. Let’s work together.”

Interestingly, the bad news from California seems to be hitting PartyGaming particularly hard — perhaps because of expectations that the company was gearing up to enter the California market (as recent news of its new headquarters in the Golden State would indicate).

“PartyGaming shares have fallen more than 3% after California delayed a bill on legalising online poker,” states the UK’s Guardian news source.