Tribal Unity and Compromise Needed for California Online Poker

CaliforniaThis week the Western Indian Gaming Conference took place in California and had many asking for compromise and unity among Indian Tribes within the state to allow online poker legislation to pass. For months now, tribes in the state have yet to be able to come to an agreement to see legislation created and passed for iGaming.

Kicking off the conference, California Nations Indian Gaming Association Chairman Daniel Tucker, stated that a unified front is needed to see legislation come to pass in the state of California. In the past, legislation for online poker has failed due to tribes, cards rooms, race tracks and government officials not being able to come to an agreement on the language of such bills.

Currently, there are two pieces of legislation in the state that are competing against each other to see online poker allowed within the states borders. Tribes are split on which bill they agree with and unity is needed to see the activity become reality. A bill created by Assemblyman Reginald Jones-Sawyer is being supported by the Morongo Band of Mission Indians and the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians. This bill would see card clubs, race tracks, tribes and companies who may have experienced legal issues associated with online gambling to take part.

A second bill was introduced by Assemblyman Mike Gatto which would not allow companies with legal issues involving online gambling as well as exclude race tracks. Other tribes are in support of this bill including the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians.

To see one of the bills pass, at least 2/3 of the legislative majority must agree on the measuer. Compromise is going to have to take palce for a bill to be passed. In a report by The Press Enterprise, the Chairman of the Rincon Band of Luiseno Indians Bo Mazzetti, stated that there is going to have to be give and take on everyone’s part and there are going to be parts of the legislation that everyone does not like.

Many tribal leaders and those involved in the effort to see online poker take place in California believe that unanimity will be impossible but gaining the support of the majority may be possible to see a measure move forward and become a law.

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