Tribal Casino Fighting Idaho Poker Ban

An Indian tribe in Idaho wants to open a poker room and they are not letting a state constitutional ban stop them. The Coeur d’Alene Casino is scheduled to open a new poker room on May 2nd, despite the state having a ban on poker games. The tribe says the law does not apply to the tribe and their casino.

The Idaho Lottery Commission has a different take on the subject. They may be planning on shutting down the poker games at the casino, which would be six tables in all. The casino would be offering Texas Hold’em and Omaha and there would be no house bank involved, the players would only be competing against each other and wagering on the outcome.

The tribe asked many opinions on the subject before moving forward with creating the online poker rooms. According to the information found, the tribe believes they are exempt from the state regulation as based on the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

However, the Lottery Commission has a different opinion. Jeff Anderson is the director of the commission and he stated that the state has interrupted the law differently. The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act does exempt card games that are non-house banked on tribal lands but this is only when the given game is not prohibited by law.

According to Anderson, the game of poker is specifically prohibited in the state, by law. There have been arrests in the state before for breaking this law. Anderson recently sent a letter to the National Indian Gaming Commission to ask to speak about the subject. The casino is now trying to work out the details where they can offer poker by the deadline without having to be subject to the law or prosecution. It will be interesting to see if the casino can pull this off or if poker will still remain nonexistent in the state of Idaho.