Harry Reid wasn’t able to push online poker regulation through on a national level which was much to the dislike of Las Vegas. Then New Jersey was able to pass an online poker bill but then it got vetoed by their governor which received a mix reaction by the industry. Now California, Iowa, Florida and now Nevada have similar bills being considered.
I actually wanted the New Jersey bill to fail. That is because I think Nevada needs to be the leader in online poker regulation. Las Vegas and the State of Nevada have always led the way in all other forms of gambling and it should be the same for the next generation of gambling, internet gambling.
Nevada needs jobs bad. It needs a reason to draw people here, especially educated people. Not only would there be the potential for tens of thousands of jobs on the customer service level but many jobs, especially at first, would be on the technical and legal side. This would create a much needed boom for the economies of both Nevada and Las Vegas. It could also offset the massive flight of educated minds that are leaving Nevada on a daily basis.
I don’t see online poker doing well within the borders of Nevada. Maybe that is why existing online poker sites that accept U.S. players would be allowed. That way Nevada players could play a large player pool as opposed to a ring fenced platform. In my opinion this is really a strategic law for the state. They need to be the first to legalize online poker so they can set the rules and create the industry in Las Vegas. Once one state leads the way I see others following and it will be easier to join Nevada’s existing setup than it will be to start from scratch. It all has to start somewhere and Las Vegas is the most logical place in the country for it to launch.