Known in the poker world for having a big bike waiting outside for players that he sends home busted from live cash games and poker tournaments, Antanas Guoga aka Tony G, is heading to Brussels, Belgium — but the journey doesn't include poker. Tony G announced on his blog and Facebook that next year his hat in the ring to run for the European Parliament elections as a candidate for the liberal party and he will attempt to "change Lithuania."
The European Parliament currently has 766 members and many consider it to be one of the most powerful legislatures in the world. The main roles of the European Parliament — combined with the efforts of the Council of the European Union — are to discuss and pass European laws; supervise other European institutions; and adopt and enforce the EU's budget.
Guoga will represent the Lithuanian Liberal Party at the upcoming elections. The party's support pushed Tony G to second place in the party ballot where he overtook Petras Austrevicius, a seasoned politician who was the former negotiator for Lithuania in European Union membership negotiations. Lithuania's last election found liberals gaining one representative in the EU Parliament and Guoga says that this year the party has set a goal to fight hard for at least two seats. The elections will take place in May 2014.
"I think that Lithuanian politics needs new people and new blood and I want to change policy," Guoga said on Monday. "I have been fortunate enough myself to be reasonably successful in my life and I have new ideas and hope to inspire others to come into politics too. I think I can bring a lot to the table with my experience in life and business."
Tony G has been involved in several projects in Lithuania and his worthwhile project of helping to create jobs resulted in him winning the Lithuanian Business Lighthouse Award in 2012. Antanas was chosen for the award for promoting his country in the most positive manner.
His run for parliament means he'll be spending far less time at the poker tables. According to Guoga he is still committed to play the partypoker Premier League VII in Montreal in November but his run for parliament will keep him away from the poker tables.
Putting the finishing touches on Monday's announcement, Tony G put in a jab at U.S. Senator John McCain when he said, "There’ll be no online poker being played during debates on phone or laptop on my watch!"
McCain just happened to be playing poker on his mobile device last month during a U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations hearing.