Will Trump Pardon Manafort and Cohen? Betting Odds Are All Over the Map

Will Trump Pardon Manafort and Cohen? Betting Odds Are All Over the Map article feature image

Donald Trump. Credit: Andrea Melendez/Naples Daily News via USA TODAY NETWORK

  • Speculation is swirling about whether or not President Trump will pardon Paul Manafort or Michael Cohen.
  • Over the past 48 hours, the chances of Trump pardoning Manafort have increased from 25% (3-1 odds) to 33.3% (2-1 odds).
  • Meanwhile, Cohen's chances of receiving a pardon are just 2.9% (or 33-1 odds).

Remember the date Aug. 21, 2018. It might end up living in infamy.

Late Tuesday afternoon, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to tax evasion, falsifying bank records and campaign finance violations made on behalf of President Trump.

If that wasn’t enough, Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, was convicted on eight counts of tax evasion and bank fraud on the same day.

As our Bryan Mears noted, Trump’s impeachment chances immediately skyrocketed, moving from 33.3% (+200 odds) to 53.5% (-115 odds) following the bombshell news.

At Smarkets, a British political prediction site, the odds of Trump being impeached have spiked from roughly 40% to 60% over the past few days.

While much of the media conversation centers upon Trump impeachment, we’ve quietly been monitoring two other notable Trump prop bets: Will he pardon Manafort or Cohen?

Will Trump pardon Paul Manafort Dec. 31, 2018?

  • August 21: Yes 25% (+300 odds), No 80% (-400 odds)
  • August 23: Yes 33.3% (+200 odds), No 73.7% (-280 odds)

As you can see, early smart money has come in on Trump pardoning Manafort by year’s end, with the odds increasing from 25% to 33.3%.

At PredictIt, a popular political trading web site, Manafort being pardoned is at 32%, rising from 30% in the past 48 hours.

This movement lines up with Trump’s public support of Manafort via Twitter.

Cohen? Not so much. Paddy Power lists a Cohen pardon at 33-1, which translates to an implied probability of 2.9%.

PredictIt has the chances of a Cohen pardon at only 6%.

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