The Poker Players Alliance released its 2010 Congressional Ratings guide to prepare poker enthusiasts for the November elections.
Located at www.congressionalpoker.org, the ratings give letter grades to current congressmen and senators based on voting records, co-sponsorship of bills, Congressional letters of support, public statements and private meetings with PPA representatives.
"The poker community has made tremendous progress over the past two years in educating members of Congress on the benefits of regulating online poker," said former Senator Alfonse D'Amato, chairman of the PPA. "The grades in our 2010 Congressional Ratings Guide indicate that progress, but also underscore that more needs to be done. As we approach the mid-term elections, this guide is a valuable resource for PPA members — and all poker players in the country — as they choose to support candidates who support their right and freedom to play poker."
In the House of Representatives, in which all members are up for re-election this year, 40 percent of the 435 voting members received a passing grade. The number of representatives receiving a failing grade of D or F, dropped from from 258 in 2008 to 194. Most impressively, there is now enough information known to give a grade to 80 percent of House members, mostly due to the progress of Barney Frank's bill to license and regulate Internet gambling.
In the Senate, where there has yet to be any discussion on online poker, much less is known. Out of 100 Senators, 72 are listed as question marks. The only A is to Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who introduced a bill to license and regulate online poker that has made no progress. Harry Reid (D-N.V.), extremely important to poker's efforts as the powerful Senate Majority Leader, is given a B.
At www.congressionalpoker.org, poker supporters can look through their state, click on their representatives and send a PPA form e-mail or tweet in moments. If the PPA has a letter or correspondence from the representative, it can be read from a link on the profile page.
The following is a breakdown of grades in each house — House of Representatives: A= 89, B=75, C=8, D=97, F=79, ?=87; Senate: A=1, B=8, C=0, D=1, F=17, ?=72.
The ratings do not include the challengers for House and Senate seats. However, PPA executive director John Pappas said the organization will be endorsing candidates through the PPA Political Action Committee prior to the election.
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