Cookies on the PokerWorks Website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the PokerWorks website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookie settings at any time.

Continue using cookies

Poker News | Gambling and the Law

Washington State Lawmaker seeks to Change Internet Gambling Ban

Share this
Last year, the Washington state legislature made it a class C felony to play poker, play craps, bet on football, or in any other way gamble on the internet. This was the most stringent and specific anti-internet gambling legislation to date, and carried the potential for serious penalties. Other class C felonies in Washington State include making threats on the life of the governor, possessing child pornography, drug dealing and child molestation. Now, State Representative Chris Strow, a Republican from Whidbey Island is seeking to change this law.

"There's a certain point at which policy can be perceived as ‘nanny stateish.' I think we reached that point with last year's legislation and I'm aiming to make amends," said Strow. His legislation, House Bill 1243, seeks to eliminate the felony charge language in last year's legislation addressing in-home internet gambling. This would not make it legal to gamble online in Washington, but it would also not seek to imprison online poker freeroll players.

"My goal with this legislation is to correct an element from last year's online gambling bill, Senate Bill 6613, that made it a Class C Felony to gamble recreationally in one's own home if it is done online," said Strow.

"While I do see the need for protecting our citizens from online gaming that may be scamming innocent victims, I do think that there is also a level of accountability, as an adult, to do as he or she chooses in his or her own home," said Strow. "Most certainly choosing to gamble, or play a game of skill such as poker, should not have been made a crime equivalent to possessing child pornography or threatening the Governor."

House Bill 1243 is currently awaiting a hearing in the House Commerce and Labor Committee.

"While I have requested a hearing on the bill, people need to call and write the Chairman of the House Commerce and Labor Committee, Representative Steve Conway, and ask him to schedule a hearing for House Bill 1243," said Strow. Rep. Conway can be reached at (360) 786-7906 or

* was a source for this article.*

News Flash

The IRS Scores Big at 2015 WSOP ME Final Table

The IRS managed to snag 34.13 percent from the payouts of the 2015 November Nine, totaling $8,467,091.

Read more

Quick Room Review

Bonus Room review

Subscribe to the Nightly Turbo

Be the first to know all the latest poker news, tournament results, gossip and learn all about the best online poker deals straight from your inbox.

RSS Feed