A federal judge just ruled that poker is mainly a game of skill, not chance, when the conviction of a New York man who ran a poker club was tossed out.
It's been a long hard struggle in court rooms across the land; the effort to separate the skill required to play poker from the chance roll of the dice or the spin of a slot machine. Perhaps the legal victory for Lawrence Dicristina will push the needed momentum to keep the ball rolling. Dicristina ran a poker game in the back of his warehouse and he was charged with violating a 1970s-era federal law, the Illegal Gambling Business Act. The definition of gambling in the act defines slot machines, lotteries, and bookmaking.
On Tuesday, Federal District Court Judge Jack Weinstein agreed with Dicristina's lawyers:
"In poker," he wrote, "increased proficiency boosts a player's chance of winning and affects the outcome of individual hands as well as a series of hands. Expert poker players draw on an array of talents, including facility with numbers, knowledge of human psychology, and powers of observation and deception."
Foot stomping, hand clapping, jumping in the air for joy, is going on right now in the U.S. as daylight starts to cut through black in the reality zone.