US online poker advocates steel themselves for do or die lame duck fight

TAGs: dean heller, Harry Reid, online poker bill

lame-duck-congressBackers of a US federal online poker bill hit their electoral trifecta on Tuesday, with President Barack Obama retaining his seat in the White House, Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) retaining majority control of the Senate and Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) fending off the challenge of Democrat Shelley Berkley. Ahead of these heroes looms the lame duck session of Congress. And so we enter… end game.

Reid and Heller have eight weeks in which to convince 10-15 GOP senators to hold their noses and vote ‘aye’ for online poker. Either that, or the bill’s GOP co-author Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) needs to rechristen the bill the Ronald Reagan Is God Act of 2012 and attach it at the last second to a piece of must-pass legislation, such as a bill to boost senator pay on days that end in ‘y’. Can Harry bring this prime piece of pork home to his Nevada casinos for the best Christmas ever or will the GOP play the Grinch? Will America greet the New Year with a federally regulated online poker system, or will US players have to endure the unspeakable horrors of a laborious state-by-state rollout? Pass the popcorn, this is gonna be good…

On the national political stage, Tuesday evening was almost anticlimactic. While the Fox News team grew increasingly downcast as the outcome became apparent, Karl ‘The Architect’ Rove refused to give up. The man George W. Bush called ‘Turd Blossom’ spent most of the evening furiously computing statistics on what looked like Krispy Kreme napkins, insisting all the while that Mitt Romney wasn’t yet mathematically eliminated, like Homer Simpson chasing that flying pig, keeping up a mantra of ‘it’s still good, it’s still good’.

Mitt eventually conceded, then appeared before his supporters to deliver the standard ‘sure, I said my opponent was a hypersexual necrophiliac who nocturnally prowled graveyards, exhuming and skull-fucking the bodies of your loved ones, but I didn’t really mean it’ speech. Then Obama came out and did a rhetorical ‘greatest hits’ set, like one of those old seventies bands that doesn’t really have any new material to promote. We’d make some comment about how his eldest daughter is going to be a major fox when she reaches adulthood, but we really don’t want drones following us on our way to work every morning.

Despite all the hype, Sheldon Adelson’s millions didn’t help Mitt win the White House. Hell, Adelson couldn’t even ensure that Rabbi Shmuley Boteach won New Jersey’s 9th Congressional District. Lest you think that the nation’s political system is completely unreliable, MGM Resorts’ millions won the company the chance to build a new casino – with table games, thank you very much – in Maryland. There were a few other results worth mentioning, like the Senate getting its first openly gay member in Wisconsin’s Tammy Baldwin, plus Colorado and Washington letting the Beastie Boys’ Adrock say ‘thank heavens’ by legalizing the weed. We also learned that there are a lot fewer white American males than there used to be, and that women of all ethnicities tend to vote for the party that doesn’t put an asterisk after the word ‘rape.’

And so, after all that kerfuffle, all those primaries and conventions and debates and commercials and robo-calls and emails and texts and the eight kajillion trees that were cut down to make signs and banners and posters and letters and flyers and handouts … nothing really has changed. Same president, virtually the same Congress, same monumental problems, same unwillingness to compromise and arrive at a consensus… Four more beers!


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