With only a few days left before New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has to make his decision regarding a pending bill that will allow online gambling in the state, last ditch efforts are being made to convince him to vote in favor. Yesterday, the President of the Poker Players Alliance, a group which represents over one million poker players in the United States, met with a senior official in Chritie’s office to convey pro-online poker messages to the governor.
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“I definitely think the meeting went very well, because we were given a great deal of latitude to expand on our two key points,” said John Pappas “We talked about the economic benefits of legalization, and the consumer protections that can help problem gamblers. It’s clear that the Governor is still deliberating on this matter, and a decision hasn’t been made.”
Pappas also countered concerns which the Governor brought up last week in a radio interview that allowing online gambling in New Jersey could potentially create a new generation of problem gamblers. Pappas said that gamblers already have access to land casinos and high stakes games rooms, and it was difficult to follow how much they were spending.
“But online, a record is kept of every single time you log in, of each transaction, and you can shut off players who have exceeded a certain amount of losses,” he explained. “We also talked about the United Kingdom, where national gambling prevalence studies have not shown a significant increase in problem gambling in that country from offering online gaming. The problem gamblers are already out there in New Jersey, but right now they are playing in anonymity.”