The Poker Players Alliance is asking the poker community to help in another attempt to get President Obama to address online poker.
The Obama administration has taken to YouTube to field questions for the president to answer at a post-State of the Union conversation that will take place Monday from the White House. There are already more than 100,000 questions asked, including 123 about poker. The site vaguely states that the president will answer several of the top-voted questions during the interview.
PPA executive director John Pappas has submitted the following question with video and text: “Regulating internet poker will establish strong consumer protections; create new jobs and revenues for states and the federal government. President Obama, will you support this common-sense public policy?”
As of this writing, the PPA's question has 446 likes and 46 dislikes. To find the question, go to the White House YouTube channel linked above and search for poker on the right-hand side. A login is required to vote. There are multiple questions unrelated to poker that have tallied more than 3,000 likes. The deadline for votes to be counted is Jan. 28 at midnight Eastern time.
The poker community is still waiting for the response promised by the Obama Administration for the “We the People” online poker petition.
The petition got off to a strong start last September, quickly passing the required 5,000 signatures to get a response. The petition finished with 9,296 signatures, less than the final required total of 25,000, but was still guaranteed a response because it passed the original requirement before it was raised.
To date, 41 responses have been issued. The responses come not from Obama himself but from someone within the administration who deals with the topic. Judging by the responses made so far, the poker response won't be worth the wait. The responses have not addressed concerns made in the petitions but instead merely stated the administration's stand on the topics.
It's so bad that, in a second set of petitions made at the end of last year after some of the initial responses had come in, a petition was created with the title, “Actually take these petitions seriously instead of just using them as an excuse to pretend you are listening.” The petition goes on to say: “Although the ability to submit petitions directly to the White House is a noble and welcome new feature of the current administration, the first round of responses makes blatantly clear the White House intends to just support its current stances and explain them with responses everyone who has done any research already knows.” The petition got 33,714 signatures.
Still, the Obama administration has never said much of anything about online poker so any stance taken could be interesting. Perhaps that is why the online poker response is taking so long.