The past few weeks have seen positive steps forward for poker. This week’s development, however, is perhaps a half-step back. The committee report for the Senate Appropriations Committee $56.3B bill for the 2017 budgets for the Department of Justice and other government agencies includes language hostile to online poker. The House Appropriations Committee will now consider their version of this funding bill. Even if the verbiage is included in the House committee report, it would not result in a ban or even in any detrimental action to poker. It could, however, help lay the groundwork for a future backdoor attempt at a federal ban via attachment to must-pass legislation at the end of this year. This backdoor attempt is not surprising, since every time Las Vegas Sands has tried to use the front door, it has been slammed in their face.