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US Poker

  • Regulation is currently under discussion
  • Regulation has been discussed but no recent movement
  • Online poker is not likely anytime soon

Choose a state to find out more about state legislation.

New Mexico

(Estimated population as of 2013 — 2,085,287)

Gambling is prohibited in New Mexico unless specifically permitted by law. As for poker, it's not permitted unless at one of the states tribal casinos. The State Gaming Control Board states that poker is prohibited if the “poker games/poker tournaments/poker runs if money is paid for the opportunity to play and if money or prizes are being awarded as a result of the outcome of the game.”

The state has also addressed the issue of Internet gambling/wagering:

“Internet gambling is expressly prohibited by Federal law. This falls under 31 U.S.C.A. §5361, Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. The State of New Mexico, and the New Mexico Gaming Control Board do not regulate, license, control or in ANY way sanction, endorse or approve any Internet or on-line gambling, betting activity, wagering or any aspect thereof. Any statement, reference or opinion to the contrary is wrong. Such activity is strictly prohibited and not authorized, approved or sanctioned in any manner by New Mexico regulatory authorities.”

As you can see, New Mexico’s current position on iGaming is clear — they don’t allow it. However, does that mean they don’t want it? Unfortunately that appears to be the case. Back in 2013, the state and Navajo Nation were contemplating a compact that would ban all forms of iGaming, including online poker, unless operated by the tribe.

According to Thomas J. Cole of the Albuquerque Journal, the compact would ban iGaming, and if the state later legalized any form of iGaming, then the Navajos could stop sharing their slot machine revenues with the state.

“This provision was intended to discourage the adoption of Internet gaming in the state, while ensuring that, if Internet gaming is adopted, revenue sharing continues in light of any new benefit/detriment to the (Navajo) Nation,” said Enrique Knell, a spokesman for Gov. Susana Martinez. “While the impact of Internet gaming is uncertain, the state believes that brick and mortar (tribal) facilities will provide for more jobs and better serve the interests of New Mexico economic development.”

As you can see, iGaming conversations in New Mexico lean more towards prohibition than legalization. For more information check out Cole's piece here.