After years of fighting over his vision of pokie reform, MP Andrew Wilkie has given up, showing his support for the Gillard government’s watered-down version of the reform. Rather than mandatory pre-commitment, the government has agreed to a trial of voluntary pre-commitment, a far cry from Wilkie’s original plan for $1 betting limits.
However, Wilkie seems to have had enough. For over a year, Wilkie has worked hard to get the government to agree to poker machine reform. Things seemed to be going according to plan until Julie Gillard reneged on her end of the bargain, opting for a trial of the voluntary pre-commitment in the ACT. Wilkie hoped that the trial would lead to mandatory pre-commitment, but that does not seem likely.
At this point, Wilkie has claimed that he feels used. He is not pleased with the way in which the situation has turned out, but it seems as though he will simply take what he can get. The Greens and Senator Nick Xenophon are still fighting for $1 betting limits, however; but, it does not seem like that they will get what they want either.