While recent bombshells in legal cases swirling around President Donald Trump have the public debating whether or not he should be impeached, betting markets are increasingly confident that the move will come before his first term is finished.
Indeed, Trump is now rated more likely than not to be impeached during his first term, according to the latest odds offered by Irish bookmaker Paddy Power. Odds of 4/5, an implied probability of 56 percent, are available on Trump’s impeachment before his term ends in January 2021. Conversely, a bet on Trump not to be impeached is currently rated at even money, or 50 percent.
It was a similar story on political prediction market PredictIt, which saw the price on Trump to be impeached in his first term leap to a value of 48 cents, the highest it has been in at least three months.
The shift in odds comes after federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York implicated the president directly in federal crimes related to hush-money payments to women during his 2016 campaign.
In a sentencing memo for Michael Cohen, prosecutors in New York wrote that the president had directed his former longtime personal lawyer to commit two campaign finance violations. Prosecutors later backed up the assertion that the president was behind the payments to silence two women about their claims of affairs with Trump shortly before the 2016 election when Cohen was sentenced in court to 36 months in prison.
A second bombshell dropped when the same prosecutors indicated that National Enquirer parent company American Media Inc. acted “in concert with” the Trump campaign when it bought the story of former Playboy model Karen McDougal — who claims she and Trump had an affair several years ago — with no intention of running it.
With Democrats taking over leadership of the House next year, the likelihood of Trump’s impeachment only grows, though Democratic leadership has signaled impeachment currently is not high on the agenda.
Were Democrats to vote in unison come January then they could make Trump just the third president in history to be impeached. Still, Democratic leaders, most notably presumed next House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, are still speaking cautiously about such a dramatic move, perhaps all too aware that a conviction in the Senate remains unlikely when Republicans have control of the chamber and a two-thirds majority is required.