How to play poker with Democratic Convention delegates

pocket-acesAmongst my inner circle I was voted “Least Likely to Attend the Democratic National Convention.” In fact, I didn’t receive an invitation to a single sanctioned event…bummer. And I’ve never been too big on gambling either, but I have been enticed into a few small-stakes poker games. And last night it just so happened to be a few delegates/friends twisting my arm to hand them a few of my hard-earned dollars.

No, Ben Affleck wasn’t in the room, and I am not going to bore you with a hand by hand description of the play either. But the convention still has two nights left, so I suspect there are still more games to play – as a contribution to the community I’m instead handing out some tips for success while playing poker with delegates, based on a night’s full of observation…

Contrary to popular belief about democracy and such, political conventions are all about partying. So make sure your opponents are the ones doing it. Tell them you are on the wagon, even if it’s just your nurturing the prior day’s hangover – make sure they drink plenty of political ale during play.

Next up: Delegates (particular the well-to-do kind) like action. I say don’t let them have it! Refuse no-limit games – in fact, suggest something like 2-4/5 limit. You may seem like the sissy up front, but this tack will pay dividends over the course of the evening. The want for higher stakes will push your politically-oriented opponents to chase pots. And chase they will, even when they have no hand to speak of.

Making the ‘deter action’ bit work also requires you play fairly tight. Sure, if you get dealt pocket aces over and over again you have little choice but to raise and re-raise like a mad person, but otherwise the best course is to fold…a lot. This has the additional benefit of enhancing the pot chasing phenomena too. You are, however, going to have to give up some pocket change while setting up for the bigger kills – coughing up a few blinds and a few uneasy calls will work wonders for your opponents self-perceived poker skills.

In Summary

1) Make sure your delegate friends get good and sauced;
2) Capitalize on their need for action by folding while they’re agitating;
3) Pound the big hands by steadfastly jacking up the pots;
4) Take your delegate friends’ money while their confidence is brimming.

The Convention officially ends on Thursday, and I’m sure most delegates (and the media and support) will be anxious to get home to their families for holiday weekend festivities. I’ll no doubt be fly fishing, and I’m happy to note that funding for my flies, leaders, lunches and fuel is secure.

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