A bill pushed by Las Vegas Sands in the recent Nevada legislative season died as it failed to leave committee by the May 15 deadline. The bill sought to redefine what interactive gaming was, in particular as it pertained to interstate agreements. The goal of the bill was unknown, although it was widely acknowledged Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson vehemently opposes online gambling.
Even as such, people were left to only speculate as to what the bill hoped to achieve. As it stands, only online poker is legal in Nevada. One theory was it would kill any possibility to network progressive online slot jackpots over state lines. One other possibility was that it would prevent interstate lotteries if Nevada passes an amendment to allow them down the road.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board even said the bill would have “no current fiscal impact” due to the state only regulating online poker—although Nevada law would allow its casino operators to one day offer house-banked casino games if approved by regulators. While U.S. Senator Harry Reid does not think online gaming is good for Nevada, it would be a while before it happens, if ever.
Right around the time the bill was brought to light, Nevada and Delaware merged their online poker player pool. This had been in the works since the February 2014 signing of the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement between Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval and Delaware Governor Jack Markell.
For online poker to succeed in America, moves like this are more than necessary. As it stands, only WSOP.com is showing any life in Nevada, with Ultimate Poker now defunct. WSOP.com only shows a seven-day average of 170 cash game players. Before the player pool merger, Delaware’s three rooms barely showed any life at all. Both states now, obviously, show the same amount of players.