President Donald Trump’s propensity for near constant lying—an asset when he was a private businessman trying to appear more successful than his bottom line before investors and the public—paid off for people Tuesday night.
How could a President with a passing relationship with the truth pay off?
Betting website Bookmaker.eu allowed people to bet on how much Trump would lie during his presidential address from the White House’s Oval Office Tuesday night. When presented with the wager of whether or not Trump would lie more or fewer than 3.5 times during his short speech, 92 percent of bettors chose more than 3.5 times.
And that turned out to be the winning bet.
According to their fact-checker—the bookmaker relied on The Washington Post—Trump lied six times during his approximately nine minute address. That’s a little less than one untruth per minute.
While no one was surprised in the United States, the betting site based in the European Union underestimated the President’s ability and frequency of telling lies and how many people would choose to bet on Trump telling many lies.
After all, several organizations dedicate at least part of their time to tracking what some refer to as the true Trump administration legacy: a President that lies every time he speaks to the public and the personnel who support and perpetuate his untruths.
The site will lose $276,424.
Amateurs. For any Trump speech O/U should be at around 5 lies per minute.
— Rurikbird (@rurikbird) January 9, 2019
Gambling site loses a quarter million dollars after people correctly bet Trump would lie more than 3.5 times during his primetime address https://t.co/2pPNwnSETs
— Jon Passantino (@passantino) January 9, 2019
John Lester, odds consultant, stated:
“It’s a bad day for Truthiness and Bookmaker. We knew we were in trouble early with this one.”
He added why the site bet on making money with the President telling fewer rather than more lies.
“We figured the president’s strategy going in would be a bit of fear mongering to create pressure on the Democrats to approve the funding of the wall (or barrier), however the president was also constrained by an approximate 8-minute time limit.”
Bookmaker gambled on the President lying less due to the close scrutiny, but lost. Lester explained:
“With all the cable networks agreeing to air the speech, it came down to, how many times is the president willing to exaggerate the truth to accomplish his agenda, when he knows the world will be scrutinizing his every word?”
People’s reactions to news of Bookmaker’s losses due to the President’s willingness to lie were also predictable.
People were disappointed they did not have a chance to bet on Trump’s willingness to lie to people in the United States in a live telecast.
Why I didn’t know about this? I will wake up rich this morning.
— JG (@jgtogo) January 9, 2019
Wish I had seen this I would have bet multiple times .
— immigrantsage (@immigrantsage) January 9, 2019
I wish I had known about this. Easy money.
— Sarahcelia Marie (@blaskis24) January 9, 2019
I would have bet my monthly pension he would lie a minimum of 3 times. trump can’t help himself
— Adrian Murray (@polyphonicism) January 9, 2019
Others could not believe Bookmaker set the lies threshold so low.
Wow. The site bet on him lying – but thought the 8min time constraint would restrain his lies to 3.5 whoppers – they were wrong! He told 6 big lies in 8 minutes.
— BLOOP! (@susiemcdonnell) January 9, 2019
They need better odds makers. Clearly the man who can’t NOT lie was going to tell more than 3.5 lies last night. #LiarInChief
— JenaiHuff (@JenaiHuff) January 9, 2019
WTH? I thought the over/under should be closer to 20.
— Greg Robinson (@GregR1970) January 9, 2019
That’s totally ridiculous.
— HoneyBea (@natrikamode) January 9, 2019
How COULD they have lost? he would’ve had to lie NO MORE than 3 times.
— Bill Verna (@verna_bill) January 9, 2019
And some characterized the President’s behavior as childish.
He lies because the truth is he’s never had anything valuable to offer so he makes stuff up to make it seem like he does.
— FreestylerMom 🇺🇸 ⛷️ (@HighPlainsGirl1) January 9, 2019
— Elizabeth Carmichael (@ElizabethCarml) January 9, 2019
But was there another motive for the speech?
Shortly after the speech aired, the Trump campaign sent out an email asking for donations.
Trump just sent his SECOND fundraising email today asking for money based on his “speech”
This was a campaign event disguised as a presidential msg and the networks all fell for it pic.twitter.com/E5oEKpcQ2U
— Andrew Lawrence (@ndrew_lawrence) January 9, 2019