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Poker News | Gambling and the Law

PPA at the WSOP – Speak Up And Protect Poker

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When you arrive at the Rio Convention Center, the first stop must be the Amazon Room, whether you’re playing or watching the action. But wandering the halls presents the opportunity to stop at various booths for information on various products and services. One that should warrant a few minutes of your time is the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) booth.

The Poker Advocacy Booth is a carefully crafted interactive stand at the end of the hallway near the Amazon Room and the doors leading out to the Poker Kitchen, and it has been set up to serve the needs of poker fans and players who are visiting the largest poker tournament series in the world. While the main goal is to distribute information about the PPA and involve poker enthusiasts in the lobbying cause, the booth also serves as a tool to communicate with elected officials.

Open every day of the 2008 WSOP, there are videos and online displays about the PPA, the organization’s accomplishments, and how to get involved. People can join the PPA, renew their memberships, or get more information about where their membership dollars are being spent.

Moreover, people can take a few moments to take some extra steps on behalf of their beloved game of poker. In addition to a petition sign-up sheet, there is a computer set up to assist people in sending letters directly – on the spot – to members of Congress, as well as local elected officials, to urge them to support legislation that will protect poker players’ rights live and online. The booth and its staff even go so far as to assist interested persons in videotaping a testimonial about why they love poker and why it deserves protection under the law. Not only will the videos be posted on the PPA website, but they will be shared with members of Congress.

Another important aspect of the Poker Advocacy Booth is that it allows players to register to vote as part of the “If You Play, Have a Say” campaign. Within a matter of moments, a simple online registration form can be completed, and the PPA will complete the form submission.

PPA Chairman former Senator Alfonse D’Amato said, “We have come a long way in educating members of Congress and state elected officials that poker is a game of skill and is not a crime. Yet the threats to our right to play this great game are not going away. The PPA’s Poker Advocacy Booth makes it easy for poker aficionados at the WSOP to make their voices heard. We are very excited to bring our grassroots efforts to poker’s hallowed ground, and we are grateful that Harrah’s and the WSOP have provided us with premium space to get our message out to the poker community.”

Reports from the PPA WSOP blog note that the flow of traffic has been “pretty intense” with numerous people utilizing what the booth has to offer. “Greg Raymer made his voice heard by sending letters to his members [of Congress] from the booth, as did many others.”

Several involved members, including the hard-working Bryan and Drew, of the PPA are staffing the booth during premium daytime and early evening hours each day. While John Pappas, PPA Executive Director, will be back and forth to Washington D.C. throughout the series, he indicated that there are attempts being made to bring various members of Congress to the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas to speak with players and encourage involvement.

In the meantime, stop by the booth and take a few minutes to protect the game of poker – the reason we are all here in Las Vegas this summer. Our voices are our only hope of keeping the government from doing further damage to our rights. Make your voice heard.

If not at the World Series of Poker this year, take a few moments to visit the PPA website at PokerPlayersAlliance.org .

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