|In an effort to overturn America’s Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), an online poker player well known as a jokester in the gaming community has received permission to circulate a petition calling on California voters to create an Internet poker gambling agency.|
The Secretary of State's office announced that it has given Anthony ‘Tuff Fish’ Sandstrom of San Diego approval to circulate his petition, which would place the proposed initiative on a Statewide ballot for voters to decide upon.
'I am just a guy who wants to play poker at home when I don't feel like making an hour drive to a card room or casino,' said Sandstrom.
'I am going to make a mighty effort to make safe, legal and accessible online poker possible.'
Sandstrom acknowledged that his initiative isn't aimed at solving big social problems but is designed simply to allow online poker at a time when Federal law prohibits the activity. The purpose would seem to be that, if passed, the initiative would create a possible court challenge where the State of California would be forced to defend online gambling in Federal Court.
Card rooms in the Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay areas, anti-gambling-expansion activists and educators, who fear diversion and loss of Lottery funds, are opposing the petition.
“A pox on the initiative,' said Fred Glass, Spokesman for the California Federation of Teachers, whose members depend partially on funds from the State-run Lottery.
Sandstrom needs signatures from about 430,000 California residents by Christmas in order to get his measure on the ballot. Although analysts are cautious over whether he will get this required number, Sandstrom is trying to gather support via the Internet.