PPA Veep Rich Muny Launches Anti-RAWA White House Petition
Poker Players Alliance (PPA) VP of Player Relations Rich Muny has taken the lobbying group’s grass-roots organization drive in a new direction today, with the launching of a voter petition aimed at the Obama administration, urging President Barack Obama to veto the “Restore America’s Wire Act” (RAWA) bill in the event the Sheldon Adelson-measured anti-gambling measure should ever reach his desk for consideration.
The creation of the petition, not done under the auspices of the PPA, but rather by Muny himself as a private citizen of Kentucky, does not necessarily mean that the unpopular, crony-capitalistic RAWA measure is likely to sail through Congress. Rather, the petition, via the White House’s “We the People” petition-generating online portal, represents the opening of an additional voter- and poker-player-based public effort in the fight against RAWA, Adelson, and a select group of anti-gambling Congressman currently doing Adelson’s bidding.
Here’s the text of the petition, which quickly picked up over 100 signatures in just its first couple of hours of existence:
WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:
Protect Internet freedom. Oppose efforts in Congress to force states to shut down state-authorized poker & gaming sites.
Protect Internet freedom and consumers by opposing House (HR 707) and Senate bills entitled the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA).
Some in Congress seek a federal shutdown of state-authorized online poker and other betting websites, and a ban on future sites. This would set a dangerous precedent where Congress could block states from authorizing online intrastate commerce. Regardless of personal opinions on wagering, the Tenth Amendment directs that states decide such matters, not Congress.
RAWA benefits only certain large donors, while state-licensed sites safeguard players, prevent underage participation, and protect those with excessive gaming habits. And, the safety and security of licensed sites drives unlicensed sites out of the market.
Please pledge to veto RAWA. Thanks.
However, a few hundred signatures aren’t what the petition needs to succeed. The White House’s online petition requires 100,000 signatures before the topic being petitioned will actually receive specific consideration and a White House response. Muny, in separately announcing the petition via his Poker Daily Action Plan page on FaceBook, noted that the drive certainly had a long way to go in the 30 days it’s eligible for consideration and participation.
Wrote Muny on Facebook:
• PLEASE SIGN THE WHITE HOUSE POKER PETITION AT http://wh.gov/iZkMG : ‘We the People’ is a feature on the White House website where we can petition the administration. If we get 100,000 signatures in 30 days, the White House will answer our question. That’s obviously an incredibly high bar, but we can use this opportunity to promote our opposition to HR 707 if we hit the threshold or not. We successfully petitioned the White House in 2011 and received a response (albeit with a much lower signature threshold), so let’s all be sure to sign the 2015 petition!
► Sign: http://wh.gov/iZkMG
► Tweet: http://spredd.it/l354mDe6
For several years, Muny has been the PPA representative most active in a grass-roots advocacy role, using social media and discussion forums to urge US-based poker players and PPA members in particular to contact their Congressmen regarding legislation of interest to poker, in particular its online form and availability.
The petition is not restricted to PPA members, nor is it offered under the formal auspices of the PPA. Whether or not the petition can achieve the needed 100,000 signatures in a somewhat brief 30-day window will be a test of seriously US-based players represent the threat that RAWA faces. The petition is open to US residents of voting age who are willing to provide their name, city/state, and an e-mail address to the site. The process includes a brief e-mail verification step to verify virtual signature authenticity.