Bookmakers have reported a flood of money on Donald Trump failing to see out his full term as President ahead of his inauguration.
Odds on the businessman-turned-politician getting impeached or resigning before the end of his term of office have halved with Ladbrokes, which opened its market at 2-1 in the wake of his election. The price has since come in to evens.
Head of political betting Matt Shaddick said 90 per cent of the bets the bookmaker has taken have been on the Republican not seeing out his full term, with just 10 per cent for the alternative, although it is still a shade of odds on.
Paddy Power, which is running a market on the date of a possible impeachment, says its most popular bet is on Trump to be impeached within six months.
The price on that has tumbled to 4-1 from 8-1, while the same to happen within two years is now 10-1 from 20-1.
Trump is also odds-on (2-5) not to seek a second term. The bookie offers 1-3 for a member of The Trump cabinet to quit within a year of taking office.
While a return of £133 from a £100 bet is unlikely to make anyone rich, that price could actually prove to be rather generous for those with the funds to bet big.
“Punters just love betting on Trump,” says Lee Price, the bookie’s political betting guru.
“For political betting he’s been an absolute godsend. The most popular bet we’ve had is for him to be impeached within six months.”
Shaddick notes that only one President in history has seen his term called to an early end by either resignation or impeachment – Richard Nixon, who resigned in his second term in 1974 in the wake of the Watergate scandal.
President Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Abraham Lincoln after the latter’s assassination, survived an impeachment trial in 1868 by a single vote. While a large majority of the Senate at the time (35-19) voted to convict, to be successful his opponents would have needed to secure a two thirds majority.
Working against those putting money on impeachment are the same forces that worked in favour of President Johnson – the arithmetic. A majority of the US House of Representatives must first vote in favour of the charges, a tough ask in the current climate given that it is currently controlled by the Republican Party that Trump leads.
After that, two thirds of the Senate have to vote in favour to convict, with the upper house also currently in the control of the Republicans.
Nonetheless, Shaddick told The Independent: “It has been completely one way traffic in the betting. Despite the historical record people still think he wont make through until 2020. If they’re right, say hello to President (Mike) Pence.”
The former governor of Indiana, who will be inaugurated as Vice-President tomorrow, would assume the Presidency in the wake of Trump stepping down.
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies