“Based on what she’s saying and where she’s going and where she's been, you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb in the ninth month, on the final day,” Trump says. “And that’s not acceptable.”
A lot of people at Beckett’s, a bar blaring the debate in New York’s financial district for an event hosted by election gambling site PredictIt, have a lot of money riding on Trump or Hillary Clinton saying specific words and phrases. Rigged. Podesta. Open Borders.
But “rip the baby out” was not on that list.
The whole bar devolves into nervous laughter and loud, desperate what!?s hurled at the TV. Behind Anthony, Mark Geyer is one of the whaters, mouth agape in the back of the bar. Geyer is a leukemia doctor at Sloan Kettering, and he’s made thousands gambling on this election on the prediction market PredictIt, but—to him—there is no amount of money that makes Donald Trump worth it.
“I even bet on Trump bigly, as he’d say, during the primaries,” he said. That’s where he made a lot of money. “But right after he said that, I started writing to my OBGYN friends. I’m like, ‘I’m sorry you have to deal with this.’ There’s never been a candidate who’s said anything like that. It’s just horrifying.”
Reeling from the disgust, the bar calms down, and Anthony Jay, a DJ and meteorologist from Queens, settles back into his gut feeling: Trump’s gonna win this thing. The whole thing.
“I picked Obama to win two times,” he said. “I think he’s gonna win.”
All of the markets say that Trump’s going to get clobbered. The Democratic candidate had an 81 percent chance to win the presidency on PredictIt before the debate started. Then the debate started and Trump’s stock started hemorrhaging fast. By the end of the debate, those shares were up to 84 cents.
Still, Jay thinks he sees something others don’t.
“She’s just so fake. Objectively. She’s a total robot,” he said. “This isn’t a thing about him. She’s just lying.”
Jay’s big pick, he said, is Florida. And if he’s right, he’s about to make a ton of money. For every dollar someone throws down against Clinton in Florida today, they’ll receive 79 cents if Trump wins.
So it’s a hunch. But if it’s a good hunch, he’s gonna make a ton of money.
“That’s my goal,” he said. “I’ve just gotta wait three weeks.”
A few minutes later, in the middle of a boring sentence, a corner of the bar erupts. Trump just said “open borders,” which paid out as high as 35 cents on the dollar.
Redmond Grybauskas is one of the yellers in the corner who just made some cash. He’s a commercial fisherman in Alaska who’s in New York for the offseason, and he has a bunch of cash on Hillary Clinton and a bunch of phrases in this debate.
“I mean, why else would I watch this?” he asks.
Because it gives you a reason to drink to unbelievable excess?
“Well, I’m doing that, too,” he said.
He wound up making a bunch of cash last night, betting on “open borders” and Trump using up more speaking time than Clinton. He bought shares in Hillary winning the White House last month when she was at a temporary dip—down to 64 cents per share.
“I’m gonna ride this thing out,” he said. “And hopefully make a little cash.”
That’s why Geyer’s in this, anyway. He was a Bernie guy, but immediately vacuumed up Clinton primary and presidential stock minutes after Sanders won New Hampshire. (“I made a lot of money, even as a Bernie voter,” he said.) Statistically, if you’re looking for a picture of where the smart money is, it’s Geyer. And Geyer has a ton of cash on Hillary.
“I think she’s underpriced (at 80 cents). I’ve spent even more money on her recently,” he said. “Realistically, if you look at polling aggregates and the map and experts, (Trump) has about a 5 percent chance.”
So why is Trump still overvalued?
“Emotion,” he said. “Just emotion.”
A few minutes later, a stockbroker was chuckling with a friend about a Trump comment in the corner of the bar. He refused to give his real name, saying it was too unique and his coworkers would find him out. (He initially gave a fake name, “Don,” before laughing it off.)
“I have money on Trump,” he said. “It’s a hedge on the rest of my life.”