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Poker News | World Poker News

Barton's Internet Poker Bill; Contact Your Representatives

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Congress started a month long vacation this week which lasts past Labor Day.  Policy makers are not out of the country or taking a break during this time and most representatives use the break to return to their home districts and find out what is in the mainstream of their constituents.  That is why the next three weeks is the perfect time to contact your congressmen and bring the right to play online poker to their attention - ask them to support HR 2366, Rep. Joe Barton's bill to protect our right to play and to license and regulate internet poker.

Obviously many of us can't make the trip to Washington, D.C. to meet our representatives face to face, but there is the possibility of meeting them on our home turf.

The Poker Players Alliance is asking people located in the districts of key congressmen on the House Energy and Commerce Committee to bring focus to Joe Barton's bill by using this time period to reach out and pester their representatives.  Remember, 'The squeaky wheel gets the grease.' If you don't continually let them know what you want, your desires go by the wayside as other matters come to the front.

If everyone puts enough pressure on their representatives, it's possible the Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on Barton's bill once Congress returns to session.  Fred Upton (R-Mich) is the committee's chairman and he is the one who will ultimately decide whether to hold a hearing or not. Set him as your target and keep the pressure on. In the PPA's congressional ratings guide, Upton is graded a "B."  Barton's bill is up to 20 co-sponsors so making an effort could bring about monumental change.

The fence seems to have more than one committee member standing on it regarding poker – that makes them a priority contact. They are: Charles F. Bass (R-N.H.), Steve Scalise (R-La.), Bob Latta (R-Ohio), Gregg Harper (R-Miss.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Brett Guthrie (R-Ken.), Pete Olson (R-Tex.), David McKinley (R-W.V.), Cory Gardner (R-Col.), Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), Morgan Griffith, (R-Vir.), Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.), Michael F. Doyle (D-Penn.), Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), Charles A. Gonzalez (D-Tex.), Donna Christensen (D-Virg.) and Kathy Castor (D-Fla.).

The PPA action center makes it easy to identify your representatives and get contact information for her or his local office; and the action center has sample letters and suggested talking points.

Keep in mind that many people want to talk to their lawmakers about the nation's debit crises and economic problems which can make it difficult for poker players to schedule individual meetings with their representatives. Don't give up! Try using message forums and social media to bring other poker players (that live in your district) together in a group and make an appointment with your lawmaker.  It's much more difficult for a lawmaker to ignore 10 people than one.

Elected officials face the public during August which is also the season for town hall meetings. An organized group is more likely to heard and seen at a meeting -and anyone can attend and possibly voice opinions - but go alone if need be. You will find most Representatives list upcoming town halls on their websites.

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