(INDIANAPOLIS) – That monthly poker game at your friend’s house is technically illegal. The Senate will vote next week on a bill to allow it.
Indianapolis Senator Mike Young’s (R) bill says it’s okay to play cards for money, as long as it’s at a private home, and no more often than once a week. The bill sets a bet limit of 20 bucks at a time, and it caps the number of players at 12. Public Policy Chairman Ron Alting (R-Lafayette) says if there’s not a limit on how many people can play, someone could start what amounts to a pop-up casino in his garage. He says that kind of thing is what prompted legislators to pass tighter controls on gambling in the first place.
No one’s actually faced charges over a neighborhood card game. Young says that’s a reason in itself to legalize it. He says people shouldn’t have to look over their shoulder for the possibility someone might suddenly start enforcing the law.
The bill also makes it a misdemeanor to cheat at cards when there’s money involved. It’s not a crime now. Young suggests that may be because you’d have to admit to something illegal yourself to report it.
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