Slate of D.C., Nationwide Activities to Showcase Support of Poker
Washington, DC. (June 22, 2009) -The Poker Players Alliance (PPA), the leading poker grassroots advocacy group with more than one million members nationwide, today announced National Poker Week, to be held July 19-25, 2009. National Poker Week will rally the PPA‘s vast membership nationwide to send the message to lawmakers that their constituents support poker and legislation to regulate and license the game played by more than 10 million Americans online.
„Our members – the poker players of America – are our best advocates to protect the future of poker,“ PPA Chairman and Former Senator Alfonse D’Amato said. „National Poker Week, with events in Washington, D.C., and across the country, is the PPA‘s way to make it clear to my former colleagues in the U.S. Congress that poker is important to voters and is here to stay.“
Over 30 of PPA‘s State Directors and half a dozen professional poker players will travel to Washington, D.C., during National Poker Week to meet with their members of Congress and ask them to support legislation establishing licensing and regulation of online poker, such as H.R. 2267 introduced by House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA). They will also deliver a petition to President Obama asking his support to exempt poker from the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), and for the licensing and regulation of online poker. To sign the online petition visit, www.pokerpetition.com.
Throughout the week, the PPA will be organizing telephone and email campaigns to Congressional offices so that poker players across the country can make their voice heard. Poker players should visit www.nationalpokerweek.com to learn how they can be an advocate for the game during National Poker Week.
„Protecting Americans‘ right to play poker – whether online or around the poker table – is something everyone should support even if you don’t play. Restricting what we can do online in the privacy of our own home is a slippery slope, which is why I am coming to Washington for National Poker Week – to tell my members of Congress to protect my rights,“ said professional poker player Howard Lederer, who along with Andy Bloch, Annie Duke, Jan Fisher, Linda Johnson and Dennis Phillips will participate in National Poker Week (more professional players will be confirmed later).
In addition to meetings with members of Congress, PPA will host a charity poker tournament on Tuesday, July 21, benefitting the USO and the Malone House at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Wounded servicemen and women will be playing alongside poker pros, PPA‘s State Directors, members of Congress and their staff to win great prizes. PPA is covering all administrative costs so that all proceeds from the event go directly to the USO.
The PPA will also be working with leading technology providers to host a „tech demo“ that will highlight the ability to regulate online poker through programs to verify age and ensure fairness of play, among other things.
„I am looking forward to having my state director colleagues and the professional poker players in my hometown to help the PPA spread the message that millions and millions of Americans play and love poker and that we need to keep it legal,“ said Norman Smith, PPA‘s Washington, D.C., State Director.
PPA also announced MyPokerStory.com, a program to collect and record stories from poker players across the nation on why poker is so important to them and why they believe the government should keep poker legal. People can record their own video and upload it directly to www.mypokerstory.com, or visit the PPA booth at the World Series of Poker and record and submit a video there. Everyone who submits a video will be entered into a drawing to win our special Grand Prize: a two-night Las Vegas vacation (with airfare) for two. Runners up will also be selected for other special PPA prizes.
PPA has partnered with a variety of organizations to make National Poker Week possible, including PokerPages.com, PokerListings.com, ConJelCo, PokerTube, PocketFives.com, Poker News and Poker Road.
For more information on National Poker Week, please visit www.nationalpokerweek.com, and to sign the PPA‘s petition to President Obama, please visit www.pokerpetition.com.