Poker in PA
Monday, September 21, 2009
Good news for poker and Pennsylvania. Bad news for Atlantic City.
About three years ago, a law in Pennsylvania legalized slot machines in certain establishments. This was a boon for Pennsylvania, but supposedly hurt Atlantic City, the nearest gambling site for a great portion of Pennsylvania.
Fast forward to today, and we are on the verge of seeing table games legalized in Pennsylvania. Some articles suggest that poker is on the shortlist of table games to be legalized, but that may well mean games like Carribean Stud or Three Card Poker, basically bastardized versions of poker made into table games. Regardless, real poker will hopefully either be part of the bill or will hopefully come sometime afterwards. After all, its a slippery slope, yadda yadda yadda.
One thing can't be denied: any victory for gambling is a victory for poker. For some people, that may not seem obvious. I'm looking at you, guy who thinks he can get poker legalized by classifying it as a skill game. As gambling becomes more omnipresent, the taboo will hopefully dissipate. Then poker will hopefully be an absolute given.
Of course, this does not bode well for Atlantic City. It certainly sucks that they lost a portion of the slot monkeys. After all, slots probably make the most money per square foot in any casino. But at least the table games kept some of the PA gamblers from entering NJ. With that gone, I would be shocked if any PA gamblers would take the time and effort to travel to AC if they have a gambling hall in-state.
This may be good, in some ways, for AC players, though. In particular, hopefully competition will cause AC to get some of their hotel prices in check. Right now, the AC casinos seemed to have upped their prices to compensate for less visitors. A room at the Showboat can run upwards of $350 per night on some weekends, and the Showboat is not a $350/night hotel. I'm crossing my fingers that AC will be scared enough to actually try to entice more overnight visitors with cheaper weekend rates, instead of milking them like they currently do. The negative, of course, is that some casinos may continue to suffer, the new casinos being built may slow (some seem to already be on hold, but I'm too lazy to look up the situation). That is a real shame, since AC was definitely working hard at rehabilitating itself from a drug and hooker infested gambling den that happened to be on the water to a seaside destination with shopping, gambling and entertainment at a variety of well-appointed hotels.
Just something to think about.
Until next time, make mine poker!
posted by Jordan @ 4:41 PM,