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Win a $2500 Card Player Cruise Package and Cash

Location:  Canterbury Park, Shakopee, MN

$150 NLHE

Monday, Jan 2, 9, 16, 23, 30            

6:30 PM  I  Sign-ups begin at 5 PM*

$2,500 Cardplayer Cruise Flyer

Big Stack Avalanche Tournament

Location: Running Aces Harness Park

Big Stack Avalanche Tournament

Saturday, January 28th – Noon

Main Event – $500 Buy-In $20,000 in chips – 40 Min. Blinds $15,000 Guaranteed 1st Place!

Big Stack Avalanche Satellites Every Friday in January – 3pm Wednesday, January 25th – 6pm $65 Buy-in Top 10% are awarded seats into the Big Stack Avalanche Main Event

Big Stack Avalanche Tournament Flyer

$5,000 Free Roll Hangover Tournament

Location: Running Aces Harness Park, Columbus, MN

$5,000 Free Roll Hangover Tournament

January 1st, 2012 – 4pm Start

$5,000 Added to the Prize Pool Optional Unlimited $10 Add-ons for an additional $5,000 in chips

Freeze Out – No re-entries
Registration begins at 10am January 1st Priority seating for seated poker and table game players. Seat card assignments will begin at 3pm for seated guests.

$5,000 Free Roll Hangover Tournament Flyer

Player of the Year Update

There are only two Player of the Year eligible tournaments left in 2011. Those would be the Friday evening $150 at Mille Lacs and the Saturday morning $150 at Canterbury Park.  Nate Fair maintains a 16-point lead on John Alexander.  Its looking good for Mr. Fair who’s currently in Florida enjoying his lead from afar!

RankPlayerPOY Points# of POY Cashes
1Nate Fair22311
2John Alexander20720
3John Olson166.55
4Rob WazWaz1575
5Blake Bohn154.56
6Paul Schroeder1486
7Robert Vansyckle145.512
3 Putts145.513
8Matt Alexander141.510
9Erick Wright1386
10Jason Seitz137.59
11Tom Hammers132.55
12Dan Favreau131.511
13David Marlow129.53
Everett Carlton129.54
14Nesbitt Coburn1234
15Lee Surma1229
16Gary Pihlstrom11712
17Michael Luikens11417
18Joe Matheson113.54
19Todd Melander11312
20Kye Longtin112.516
21Judd Greenagel106.56
22Bryan Mileski1016
23Shawn Aaberg997
24Peixin Liu96.526
25Adam Laskey963
26Hank Mlekoday95.55
27Ron Spain93.511
28Ryan Hohenstein92.59
29Kou Vang91.54
30Matt Leshovsky90.57
31Dan Shogren906
32Tim Votava87.512
33Steve Krogness86.59
34Shane Nelson85.54
35Peter Miller852
36Nick Anderson848
37Dennis Stevermer83.53
38Ryan Hartmann82.52
Jeremy Dresch82.52
39John Morgan828
40David Mandt80.54
41Tony Hartmann804
42Steve Hammerschmidt793
Bob Beedle795
43Curt Heller786
44Brandon Beery75.52
Mark Sandness75.56
Jim Erickson75.52
45Christopher Johnson752
Eric Abate755
Rob Steinmetz755
Jared  Hubbard751
46Dan Hendrickson7410
Ron Imgrund747
47Patrick “Referee” Kenney72.510
48David Pritchett728
49Jason Corrigan71.58
Terry Glarner71.511
50Doug Fink70.510
Brian Zekus70.53
51Leo Fussy696
52Ben Anderson672
53Spenser Brackey664
Reg Powell668
54Matt Hyland65.53
55Adam Schop651
56Jim Meehan64.53
Adam Dahlin64.53
57Chad Keller643
Sara Allgood645
58Tom Marsland62.52
Lance Lucas62.53
59Jason Senti61.52
60Jeremy Calverley60.52
61Eric Dewitt601
William Vincent601
Brian Halik601
62Tim Mieczkowski59.53
63Aaron Johnson599
Derek Crooks593
64Ken Cary585
65Zeph Baer576
66Thomas Sharp56.511
67Tom Sadowski5610
68Chris Schrom554
Wade Woelfel552
Sam Desilva551
69Kyle Gruis54.56
Toan Pham54.56
70Justin Pacult542
Mike Lingenfelter542
71Bill Criego53.57
72Henry Holderness532
Paul Pederson538
73David Westrom52.51
74David Gonia527
75Nate Richmond501
Jonathan Lane501
Chad Poitra507
76Erin Bentley48.52
Rocky Wylie48.53
77Daniel Buckley483
78Brian Schummer47.51
Ron Lokken47.51
Dan Dykhouse47.51
Al Giardina47.52
Rene Berube47.52
Andy Redleaf47.56
Chad Tagtmeir47.53

John “JohnnyGstaks” Hayes and Jared Hubbard interviews

Local players Chris “Fox” Wallace and Adam Stemple from St. Paul host a bi-weekly podcast on pokerxfactor.com called Under the Gun.  These two poker veterans bring humor and insight to their show while sharing what they have learned about life and poker.

In recent episodes they had a chance to sit down with online stud JohnnyGStaks, also from St. Paul, and Fall Poker Classic champion Jared Hubbard of Farmington.

To listen to these interviews, go to http://www.pokerxfactor.com/podcast.htm

RF Moeller – Introducing Forevermark Diamonds

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www.rfmoeller.com

3 Locations:  St. Paul, Edina, Minneapolis

A Present from the DoJ: Internet Lotteries (and Poker?) Are Legal.

December 24, 2011

 The United States Department of Justice (“DoJ”) has given the online gaming community a big, big present, made public two days before Christmas. President Barack Obama’s administration has just declared, perhaps unintentionally, that almost every form of intra-state Internet gambling is legal under federal law, and so may be games played interstate and even internationally.

Technically, the only question being decided was “Whether proposals by Illinois and New York to use the Internet and out-of-state transaction processors to sell lottery tickets to in-state adults violate the Wire Act.” But the conclusion by the DoJ that the Wire Act’s “prohibitions relate solely to sport-related gambling activities in interstate and foreign commerce,” eliminates almost every federal anti-gambling law that could apply to gaming that is legal under state laws.

If the Wire Act is limited to bets on sports events and races, what other federal anti-gambling statutes are left? There are prohibitions on interstate lotteries, but Powerball and the other multi-state lotteries show how easily these can be gotten around, even before Congress passed an express exemption for state lotteries. And poker is not a lottery under federal law.

So, all that are left are the federal laws designed to go after organized crime. These all require that there first be a violation of another law, like the Wire Act, the federal anti-lottery statutes, or a state anti-gambling law. If a state has expressly legalized intra-state games like poker, as Nevada and the District of Columbia have done, there is simply no federal law that could apply.

If the bettors and operator are all in the same state, and the gambling does not involve a sports event or race, the Wire Act cannot be used against the operator, even if phone wires happen to cross into another state. And if the state legislature has made the online game legal, it does not violate any other federal anti-gambling law.

I suppose it is possible that the DoJ could argue that poker is a “sporting event or contest.” But the language of the Wire Act prohibits “information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers ON any sporting event or contest.” If poker is a contest, it is one where players bet IN the contest, not on it. Anyway, the DoJ held that the Wire Act was designed to go after bookies taking bets on horse races and football games, etc., not other forms of gambling. And even the DoJ would not argue that a game like blackjack is a sporting event or contest.

In a footnote, the DoJ expressed no opinion about the provision in the Wire Act that allows prosecutors to shut down phone lines where true interstate or foreign gambling is taking place. But, since the DoJ has now concluded that every other section of the Wire Act applies only to races and sports events, it would be truly bizarre to believe that Congress intended only this one section to apply to other forms of gambling.

This means there may be nothing preventing states from making compacts with other states, and even foreign nations, once they have legalized an online game, like poker. If Nevada and the District of Columbia want to take Internet poker players from each other, what federal law would they be violating? And, if they agreed that their residents could bet with licensed poker operators in, say, Antigua and England, while residents of those nations could bet with poker operators in Nevada and Washington, we know they would not be violating the Wire Act, or the anti-lottery laws, or any of the federal prohibitions which require that the gambling be illegal under a state’s laws.

The immediate beneficiaries will be the D.C. Lottery and Nevada-licensed private operators, since those jurisdictions are the furthest ahead. The state lotteries in Illinois, New York and New Hampshire will also initiate or expand their online games. After all, most of the provincial lotteries in Canada are already operating Internet poker and other online gambling games, or are about to.

I believe this will be a major incentive for the other states looking at legalizing intra-state poker and other games. First will probably be Iowa. The State Legislature mandated a report, which has already been submitted, concluding that intra-state poker can be operated safely and will raise money. The Iowa Legislature meets for a short period at the beginning of the year, so it has to act quickly, or it will be passed by other states in 2012.

Those other states are California and New Jersey. California is desperate for any source of revenue, and it has so much legal gambling that the only question is which operators are going to be the big winners. The Democratic-controlled Legislature in New Jersey approved intra-state online gaming, but the bill was vetoed by Gov. Chris Christie (R.-NJ). Christie understands his state need the money, so he will probably help put the issue on the ballot in November. Last month, the voters of New Jersey approved sports betting. There is no reason they would not also approve Internet casinos. It will be interesting to see if the main author, state senator Ray Lesniak (D.-Union), will limit online patrons to New Jersey, as his original bill stated, or, if he will accept players from any other state and nation where Internet gambling is legal.

Once these jurisdictions open their online games, even if limited to players who are physically within the state, operators will push for compacts to allows interstate Internet poker among the legal states. And other states, like Florida, will jump on the bandwagon.

What impact will all this have on proposed federal laws? Proponents are trying to spin the DoJ opinion. The Poker Players Alliance stated, “However, this ruling makes it even more important that Congress act now to clarify federal law, and to create a licensing and regulation regime for Internet poker, coupled with clear laws and strong enforcement against other forms of gambling deemed to be illegal.” But the reality is that Congressional advocates, like Barney Frank (D.-Mass.) and Joe Barton (R.-Tx.), have had some of the wind knocked out of their sails. Since states are now clearly free to legalize intra-state online poker, and perhaps even interstate, there is not as much reason to even bother with a federal law. Only the major operators, like Caesars Entertainment, need a federal law, because they don’t want to be competing with politically connected local gaming companies for limited numbers of licenses in 50 states.

Opponents, like Jon Kyl (R.-AZ) and Frank Wolf (R.-VA), might get some leverage for their attempts to expand the Wire Act to cover all forms of gambling. But, as I have pointed out (to the consternation of some who have donated money hoping for a federal Internet gambling law), Congress has passed literally no substantive laws since the Republicans took over the House of Representatives in January 2009. There is as little chance of this Congress passing a new Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act as there is its passing a repeal of the UIGEA.

The interesting question is what the Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate, Harry Reid (D.-NV) and Kyl, the number two Republican in the Senate, will do. They had sent a letter asking the DoJ for clarification of its position on Internet gambling. They now have their answer, though it may not have been what they had wanted.

My bet is that they, and Congress, will continue to do nothing, while Internet gambling explodes across the nation, made legal under state laws.

END

© Copyright December 24, 2011, I. Nelson Rose, Encino, California. All rights reserved worldwide. Gambling and the Law® is a registered trademark of Professor I. Nelson Rose, www.GamblingAndTheLaw.com. http://www.gamblingandthelaw.com/blog.html.

Still in the Hunt

John Alexander isn’t surrendering in his head-to-head battle with Nate Fair for the MNPokerMag Player of the Year title.  Fair opened up a 30-pt lead after his deep run in the Mid-States Poker Tour event at Canterbury Park.  But Johnny A. took 3rd in the $200 Canterbury Wednesday for 10.5 pts and 2nd in the Saturday $150 for another 4 pts as well as his 20th POY cash in 2011.

With 5 days to go, Alexander trails Fair by 16 pts.

Conversations with Non-Poker Players

Here’s a little funny bit for Christmas as some of you probably have a similar conversation with family members this time of year.

Warning:  Some strong language

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Minnesota Poker Magazine!  We are extremely fortunate to have so many loyal friends and followers like you!  Thank you and warm wishes!

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