While online poker players across the United States are bracing for the results of a House Committee Hearing to discuss a federal anti-online gambling measure known as RAWA, government officials in Washington DC are bracing for a potentially dreadful winter storm. The hearing on HR 707, introduced by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), was scheduled for the morning of Thursday, March 5. But due to a forecast that calls for 4-8 inches of snow dropping onto the nation’s capital, the RAWA hearing has been officially postponed.
The House Committee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations was supposed to gather at 9:30am tomorrow to debate the feasibility of the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (aka RAWA). The bill, introduced by Rep. Chaffetz one month ago today and heavily petitioned by the billionaire backing of Las Vegas Sands Corp CEO Sheldon Adelson, seeks to enforce a blanket ban of any and all forms of internet gambling in the United States.
Tuesday morning, the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) was urging all of their members, and anyone else interested in preserving states’ right to regulate online poker, to take action. A link was supplied for anyone interested to instantly Tweet a pre-filled message to all members of the relative House Judiciary Committee.
“The opponents of your freedom to play online, led by casino magnate billionaire Sheldon Adelson, have stacked the deck for this hearing,” read a statement on the PPA website Tuesday. “They have loaded the witness panel with anti-poker zealots who have no real-world knowledge of how Internet poker works.”
But later that same night, it was confirmed by the PPA that the HR 707 hearing had officially been postponed due to the looming winter weather forecasted.
CONFIRMED: House hearing scheduled for this Thursday has been postponed. Congress is out of session due to expected inclement weather-jp
— PokerPlayersAlliance (@ppapoker) March 3, 2015
The postponement was later confirmed directly on the website of the House Committee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations.
Since then, the PPA has changed the contents of its Fight HR 707 – Take Action wepbage, pending further refinement. “Due to the postponement we will be refining this Take Action page. Stay tuned and we will be directing you back here very soon with all new actions.”
A new date for the HR 707 hearing has not yet been set. A notice on the committee website simply states that “it will be rescheduled at a later date.”
Let your State Rep know you Oppose HR 707
In the meantime, anyone who would like to let their representatives know how they feel about RAWA and has a few minutes to spare can Tweet or telephone all members of the House Committee, which presently includes 4 sponsors of RAWA. The complete list of committee members, along with their Twitter addresses and office telephone numbers, are supplied below.
|State||House Representative||District||Partisanship||Twitter Acct||Telephone #|
|California||Rep. Judy Chu||27th||Democrat||@RepJudyChu||202-225-5464|
|Puerto Rico||Pedro Pierluisi||AL||Democrat||@pedropierluisi||202-225-2615|
|South Carolina||Trey Gowdy||4th||Republican||@TGowdySC||202-225-6030|
|Texas||Sheila Jackson Lee||18th||Democrat||@JacksonLeeTX18||202-225-3816|