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People Bet On How Much Trump Would Lie In His Oval Office Address And Won $276,424

"It's a bad day for Truthiness and Bookmaker."

Posted on January 9, 2019, at 12:17 a.m. ET

AP

A gambling site is paying out thousands of dollars to people who correctly bet that President Donald Trump would tell more than 3.5 lies in his Oval Office address on Tuesday.

Bookmaker.eu asked people to wager on the president's truthfulness, offering odds of -145 for more than 3.5 lies and +115 for less than 3.5 lies. That means if a person bet $145 dollars that Trump would lie at least four times, they would win $100.

And some people won big. Odds consultant John Lester told BuzzFeed News the site will lose $276,424, with 92% of its bettors correctly wagering that Trump would lie a lot.

"It's a bad day for Truthiness and Bookmaker," he said. "We knew we were in trouble early with this one."

The site used the Washington Post's Fact Checker as the arbiter of Trump's truth and lies. The Post's live blog has corrected six statements that Trump made during the televised address seeking a border wall. (Here's the reality of what's going on at the border.)

Lester said Bookmaker expected Trump to lie, but that it had also factored in the time constraints the president would be under in delivering Tuesday's speech.

"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," Lester said. "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?"

The maximum online wager was set at $2,000, but Lester said a few of the site's clients bet more upon request. The biggest bets of the night rang in at $25,000, $20,000, and $15,000 — all in favor of Trump telling more lies.

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