Donald Trump Betting: Will the President Get Impeached During his First Term?

by Taylor Smith
on August 3, 2018
10

Minute Read

Donald Trump is the President of the United States, which presumably will never not sound weird. Since election night of 2016, the news cycle has been bombarded with a seemingly endless cascade of scandals, angry presidential tweets and more scandals. Following the news on a daily basis at this point is fairly exhausting, so I recommend just going outside instead.

If you opt to stay inside instead, you can actually place bets on Trump-related props. Considering there appears to be no real end in sight to things as they currently stand, you might as well put some money down and try to profit on it. The good thing about Trump being in office is that we get something new every single day, so at least there is no shortage of betting options for you to consider.

Let’s go through a few of said betting options and try to identify some values, shall we? Let’s start with the good stuff.

Will Trump Be Impeached by the House of Representatives During his First Term?

  • Yes -180
  • No +220

Since Trump was elected the “I” word has been thrown around quite a bit. Of course, barring something incredibly damning coming to light, there is about a zero percent chance Trump will get impeached by the House of Representatives any time soon. The House is currently controlled by Republicans. While not all Republicans have taken a favorable view of the 45th President, most of them seem to believe that getting on Trump’s good side is the best way to get re-elected.

So, with a few exceptions, we have seen a number of House and Senate candidates take a pro-Trump mantra to the campaign trail. It hasn’t worked out for everyone. Just look at Alabama’s Roy Moore, for example. Moore obviously had some other non-Trump baggage that helped bring him down, but the president’s endorsement wasn’t enough to get him over the finish line.

With so many of the House Republicans backing Trump, it’s nearly impossible to imagine a scenario in which they would go forward with impeachment proceedings. Some of them are afraid of facing the wrath of Trump’s Twitter feed. For this to even have a chance of happening, the Democrats will have to retake the majority of the House in the upcoming midterm elections in November.

Trump’s attorney/television spokesman Rudy Giuliani recently said that the aforementioned midterms will effectively determine whether his client gets impeached or not. At a campaign stop in support of a Republican hopeful, the former New York City mayor said, “I say this not in my role as a lawyer but as a concerned citizen and Republican. This election is going to be about impeachment or no impeachment.”

“If Democrats get control of the House, do you think they’re going to treat President Trump fairly?” Giuliani asked the crowd

Democratic congressman Al Green of Texas brought a pair of impeachment proposals to the floor last winter. As expected, both were overwhelmingly voted down by the Republican-controlled House. Some Democrats even opposed the effort and said that it would be best to wait until the conclusion of the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller. If Republicans retain control of the House after the midterms, a Trump impeachment would be highly unlikely.

So, this bet essentially boils down to whether you think the Democrats can flip the House in a few months. A CNN poll (asking whether they would vote Republican or Democrat) conducted last December gave the Democrats an 18-point lead over the Republicans. It is also worth noting that a number of Republican congresspeople have already announced that they will either retire or not seek reelection following the conclusion of their current terms. That would seem to indicate that they aren’t feeling all that optimistic about their chances of being voted back in.

Of course, things change. The economy is currently in a good way, which is a check in the box of the incumbent Republican-controlled House. Some of the momentum the Democrats saw immediately after Trump’s election has stalled out. At this point, the race for the House majority looks like it may be neck-and-neck.

Midterms have a way of going against newly-elected presidents. We saw this happen during Barack Obama’s second term, when Republicans were successfully able to win back the Senate majority, giving them the advantage in both branches of congress. The midterms are likely to come down to whether the voters are more anti-Trump or more pleased with the way the economy is rolling along.

Because midterms often swing back against new presidents, I still think the most likely outcome here is that Democrats win back the House in November, which means they would (in theory) have enough votes to push for impeachment. So, I think the play here is “yes” at -180.

Will Trump be Convicted by the Senate During his First Term?

  • Yes +450
  • No -300

Of course, the House voting to impeach Trump would not be enough to get him removed from office. Let’s not forget that Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives in December of 1998. The House impeached Clinton after it received documentation from special counsel Ken Starr in relation to the Monica Lewinski scandal. The House deemed that Clinton had lied under oath, and he was ultimately charged in the Senate with both perjury and obstruction of justice.

In February of 1999 the Senate acquitted Clinton on the aforementioned charges, so he remained in office for the remainder of his full term. So, both branches of congress will have to be on board in order for Trump to be removed from office. The House can’t do it alone.

If the Democrats have a majority in the House, they would be able to send Impeachment Articles to the Senate with the hopes of getting a trial. If they do win back the majority, this will probably take place. We have no way of knowing when Mueller’s investigation is going to come to a close or what it will turn up, but Mueller has already brought a number of indictments and charges against some in the Trump orbit. Most of the targets have agreed to plea deals, with very few (most notably former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort) deciding to fight the charges in court.

The Senate has never issued a conviction to a sitting president. Clinton and Andrew Johnson were both charged but ultimately acquitted. At least 67 of the 100 sitting Senators (two-thirds) must vote in order to convict in an impeachment proceeding. Richard Nixon ultimately chose to resign rather than being convicted by the Senate, which included 56 Democrats, 42 Republicans, an independent and a conservative at the time.

Given how hyper-partisan politics are at the moment, it’s incredibly unlikely that there will be enough common ground in a potential Trump trial to force him out of office. Trump may well choose to resign amid public pressure, but we know this is not a man that will eagerly admit defeat publicly. The likely outcome is that he will ignore any and all calls for his resignation and continue to insist that he is innocent of any wrongdoing, even if legitimate evidence to the contrary emerges at some point.

So, Trump is highly unlikely to be convicted by the Senate. It would take an incredibly dramatic shift for that to happen. There’s no real betting value in “no” at -300, but it’s the right call.

The most likely outcome during Trump’s first term in office seems to be that the House will likely vote to impeach him if they reclaim control of the House in the fall of 2018. A subsequent conviction in the Senate seems far less likely, and the odds of Trump choosing to step down on his own volition would seem slim, as well. So, bet “yes” on impeachment and “no” on conviction.

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