(WICHITA, Kan.) — A federal court ruling in New York could impact court cases around the nation, including here in Kansas.
The ruling by Judge Jack Weinstein this week found poker is more a game of skill than a game of chance, so game operators should not be prosecuted under the federal law that prohibits running an illegal gambling business.
“I would have to imagine a lot of people did a happy dance yesterday,” says Shane McCullough, Executive Vice President of the World Poker Tour Amateur Poker League based in Wichita.
“It's time for Americans to realize poker is a game of skill,” says McCullough.
You may remember McCullough’s name from a court case in Wichita a few years back. He co-owned Highlands Gastro Pub in north Wichita that took its game Kandu to court and lost.
“We had our day we didn't win such as life but that was one battle in a much bigger war.”
McCullough sees others and possibly himself challenging Kansas law again.
“I would venture to guess that we will see people using this in future litigation in future cases.”
A Kansas Racing and Gaming spokesperson tells Eyewitness News the ruling does not prevent states from banning poker and right now the laws in Kansas will remain on the books.
Kansas has strict laws on poker and is one of only four states that does not have a charity exemption. Charities are not allowed to hold poker tournaments to raise money.
Courts rule on poker.