Heavy Hitters Unite For Online Gambling In Nevada

Today one of the biggest online poker brands joined forces with one of the biggest live gambling brands to push for the legalization of online poker (and online gambling in general) in the state of Nevada. Those two heavy hitters are PokerStars – the biggest online poker site in the world – and Wynn Resorts Ltd – possibly the most prominent gambling conglomerate in Las Vegas.

That wasn’t the only significant partnership forged in Nevada today, either. In very similar news, Wynn’s competitor Caesars Entertainment joined forces with PokerStars’ competitor 888 Holdings PLC. Wynn and 888 announced their intentions weeks ago, but today the Nevada Gaming Commission approved their business plan, making it the first time that state regulators have given the go-ahead for any sort of online gambling endeavor in the state. Now that the way has been paved, it seems likely that PokerStars and Wynn’s new online project will also quickly gain state approval.

Meanwhile, the new federal online gambling proposal is still in limbo awaiting its committee hearings, so Nevada is considering its own intrastate gambling legislation. That legislation would not only allow state residents (and likely state visitors) to gamble online at sites operating of the state, the bill – AB258 – also requires the state to grant licensing to preexisting poker sites.

Thus far, Nevada politicians that have been polled on the online gambling matter have been overwhelmingly in favor of the legislation. Bearing that in mind, Nevada based gambling entities like the two mentioned above (Wynn and Caesars) are either in the process of creating an online gambling site or have already launched one outside the country and are ready to bring those operations and services stateside.

Market analysts have predicted that legalizing online gambling in Nevada could give the state several million dollars in extra revenue from Nevada residents alone. If those gambling interests are extended to the world at large, then the state’s share of the international profits will likely be in the tens of millions in just the first year. As one of the most cash-strapped states in America, there’s no denying that Nevada could really use that cash, and many proponents of online poker are betting that that greed alone will yield the first intrastate online gambling legislation in the country.

Not surprisingly, the Poker Players Alliance has already stepped up to back bill A.B. 258. The PPA has been reluctant to endorse some other states’ online gambling proposals, but their strong base of Nevada members makes this state’s proposal seem like a shoe-in. Today they also issued an official press release elaborating on why they support the legislation.

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