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Kyl And Reid Preparing To Square Off Over Online Gambling Bill

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The final days of negotiating are coming to an end and by Friday, a discussion and vote may be in order on the tax cuts deal that has been struck between President Obama and Republicans. Senator Harry Reid is hoping to add an online gambling bill to the legislation, but that will not be easy.

Senator John Kyl is one of the lawmakers who was largely responsible for the tax cut deal with the president, and Kyl has gone on record as saying there is no change the online gambling bill will be attached. How strong his convictions could be key to the entire deal falling apart.

Democrats who are not in favor of the deal the president struck with Republicans have been scrambling this week to ready special interest bills to attach to the tax cuts legislation. The online poker bill from Reid is just one of many bills that will be discussed when the tax cuts bill goes to the floor.

One problem Reid may have is the way that the poker bill is worded. Already there have been complaints that it gives casinos in Reid's state of Nevada a tremendous advantage in gaining licensing. New Jersey casinos would also prosper from the bill, but new casinos around the country would likely have to wait several years before they could obtain a license.

Hurting Reid also will be the idea that he is only offering up the Internet gambling bill to pay back gaming executives that supported his re-election in Nevada. Reid barely held off challenger Sharron Angle in the mid-term elections, and the support of the gaming industry helped him retain his seat in the Senate.

The Republicans will take control of the House come January, making this likely the last time that an online gambling bill even reaches the floor in Congress. Reid has not unveiled the final draft of the legislation, and there is a chance that after seeing the backlash to certain clauses in the past couple of days, Reid has cleaned up the bill to make it more friendly for all states.

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