Morongo Band Makes Last-Ditch Push for Intranet Poker in California

by Lou on August 27, 2010

The Morongo Band of Mission Indians, located in Southern California east of Los Angeles on the road to Palm Springs, has been pushing an Intranet poker proposal in the state legislature for a few months now.  Twenty-one tribes recently joined with them in a California Intertribal Intrastate Poker Consortium.

But tribal politics are thorny, and other tribes strongly oppose the idea of legalizing online gambling, contending that it would hurt bricks-and-mortar tribal casinos.  “We have 21 tribes at this point,” said Morongo spokesman Patrick Dorinson, who anticipates “quite a few more,” adding that some of these tribes involved had “substantial gaming interests in the state.”

The tribe is working with state senator Rod Wright on a bill. Wright, as you may recall, introduced an Internet poker bill (SB 1485) in early Spring, but he couldn’t gain any traction and cancelled a hearing before his own committee. The tribe, however, is courting Wright in hopes they will become front-runners if Intranet poker in California is eventually legalized.

The Morongo band is trying to pass an online poker bill before the legislative session ends August 31.   If not, the tribe plans to try again in 2011.

I’m hoping it does … but I’m not betting on it—not by a longshot.

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