Sandra Chereb Associated Press

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval last week signs legislation legalizing online gambling in the state. A similar proposal failed last year in California, but new measures are expected to be debated this year.

The Buzz: California on sidelines as other states approve online gambling

Published: Friday, Mar. 1, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 3A

With New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's signature Tuesday, three states have now approved Internet gambling bills – a concept the California Legislature has kicked around for a few years without action.

The debate will likely be rekindled this year, as lawmakers consider at least two measures to legalize online gambling for players in California.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg's 2012 bill never went anywhere, largely because of infighting among Indian tribes, cardrooms and horse-racing tracks.

"Last year I put a little political capital out there and spent a lot of time trying to help the parties come together. They didn't. And this year, I'm moving on," Steinberg said.

David Quintana, a lobbyist who represents some tribes, said approved Internet gambling in New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware "does not create an overwhelming sense of urgency" in Sacramento, but could "kind of send a message that other states need to start looking harder at this issue."

The states approving Internet gambling are generally allowing it for players only within their state boundaries. New Jersey's law, however, allows for compacts with other states that permit Internet gambling – potentially creating competition for California if it legalizes the practice.

– Laurel Rosenhall

JUDGE WATCH

Women have accounted for slightly more than a third of Gov. Jerry Brown's judicial appointments since he took office in 2011, with minorities claiming a similar share, according to data released Thursday. The percentages of women and minorities among the 90 judges named by Brown fall below those in the state population but are more reflective of California's diversity than all the judges now on the bench.

– David Siders

WORTH REPEATING

"Congrats to Islamists, anti-Semites, isolationists, anti-Israel extremists of all stripes, and people who just wanted a moron as SecDef!"

BEN SHAPIRO, conservative political commentator and speaker on Saturday at the California Republican Party convention in Sacramento, via Twitter, on the U.S. Senate's confirmation of former Sen. Chuck Hagel as secretary of defense

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