Is Poker a Game of Skill or Chance in Colorado?

August 13 2009, 11:32 AM

Following an undercover investigation by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation last year, five people were arrested for playing Texas Hold'em at a Greeley bar. The group was surely betting---$20 to buy in---but a jury acquitted Kevin Raley, leading prosecutors to drop their charges against the others. It was never clear why the jury sided with Raley, but now The Poker Players Alliance, an advocacy group, is aiming to find out, writes The Denver Post. The group announced yesterday that one of its members plans to petition Colorado's Supreme Court for a review of Weld County District Court Chief Judge James Hartmann's recent ruling, which concludes that poker is gambling under state law (via the Greeley Tribune). Sound crazy? PPA executive director John Pappas has a seemingly brilliant answer: "Poker is indeed a game of skill" and not a game of chance. Meanwhile, you can always avoid playing in a bar and just go online. Jeffrey Wilson McCoy, a second-year law student at the University of Colorado Law School and an avid poker player, argues in a guest editorial for the New Jersey Star-Ledger that the "ban on Internet poker has not been effective in crippling the industry."