One week after the Democratic National Convention took center stage in US politics and the 2020 presidential election, it’s the GOP’s turn. On Monday, Republicans kick off their four-day celebratory programming, culminating with the party renominating Donald Trump for a second time later in the week.
The convention is still based out of Charlotte, North Carolina – where six delegates from each state will meet to cast their votes and conduct official formalities – but won’t resemble the raucous rallying cry for Republicans it was once intended to be.
The parts of the RNC worth watching will be broadcast from various locations all around the country.
Coverage of the convention is scheduled to run from 8:30 to 11 pm, Monday through Thursday.
According to Axios, they’ve designated a different theme for each night. They plan to focus their message around what the Trump campaign sees as a widening cultural divide forming between conservatives and liberals:
What they’re saying: “Let the Democrats have their Hollywood A-listers and their political elite class and social elite class,” said one of the officials, while the GOP contrasts itself as “the party of real, hardworking Americans.”
- Monday night will focus on America as “a land of heroes.”
- Tuesday: “Land of promise.”
- Wednesday: “Land of opportunity.”
- Thursday: “Land of greatness” and Trump’s plan to lead voters to “the great American comeback.”
The highest-profile guests will appear between 10–11 pm each night during a time slot organizers have set aside for a “nightly surprise factor,” when they expect television networks to carry the convention live.
Looking at the schedule and their plan for nightly surprises, the Republican National Convention will be a testament to what Donald Trump knows best: entertaining television.
Donald Trump and Republican National Convention chair, Ronna McDaniel, benefit from going second and learning from the Democrats’ broadcasts – what worked and what didn’t in the uncharted waters of “virtual conventions.” Saagar Enjeti, co-host of The Hill’s morning political talk show “Rising,” mentioned last week that the President was calling RNC organizers throughout the week, pointing out mistakes in the rival party’s presentation that he’d like to avoid repeating.
Will they discover the right formula to reignite the working-class base that delivered Trump the White House in 2016?
The rumored plan is to feature a plethora of short, precise speeches given by a wide variety of speakers who the Trumpist wing of the party believes embody different aspects of their “culture war.”
Their strategy is to generate snappy quotes and meme-worthy content that plays to the attention-deficient online crowd and 24/7 rapid-fire news media.
It’s a bold approach that is sure to outrage their liberal detractors – the jury is out on whether it’s the right decision.
In 2016, the reality TV approach to politics was “just what the doctor ordered;” I’m not sure Americans want their proverbial “jimmy’s rustled” quite as much amidst an ongoing pandemic and economic crisis.
But enough talk about the specifics of the convention and its impact on the 2020 presidential race; let’s get to the good stuff…
I’ve separated the various wagers being offered into groups based on their particular subject matter. You can find them in BetOnline‘s “Political Props” section.
Charlotte, North Carolina RNC Props
As I mentioned before, the official procedural stuff related to renominating Donald Trump will occur in Charlotte, North Carolina. BetOnline is taking action on two betting markets associated with that location.
Will There Be a Protest in Charlotte on August 24?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -2500
- No +800
When demonstrators protested outside of Republican National Conventions in the past, there were usually huge congregations of politicians, high-ranking political operatives, conservative lobbyists and donors, and enthusiastic supporters in town.
This will not be the case on Monday when the RNC festivities officially begin. Only 300 delegates and GOP officials will attend the convention in Charlotte.
Nevertheless, it would appear that some groups feel compelled to protest in Charlotte this week anyway.
They’ve already begun doing so this weekend.
On Friday night, approximately 60 demonstrators organized by a Charlotte Uprising group gathered near the NASCAR Hall of Fame in uptown Charlotte. The next day, protesters met at Marshall Park. When some participants left the park and began marching through the streets, police used pepper spray to break up the crowds and made arrests.
More of the same was planned for Sunday, with a group called Unemployed Action contributing to the demonstrations by projecting images related to the GOP’s response to the pandemic on buildings and fixtures around the city.
While the crowds aren’t huge and the RNC being protested against is a microcosm of what was originally intended, it’s hard to imagine why these groups would stop before Monday. They’ve already committed to demonstrating and gave themselves a three-day head start.
One has to imagine a “Yes” bet on protests taking place in Charlotte on Monday is a given. Unfortunately, that’s why you have to stake $2,500 to win $100.
Will Any Charlotte Protest Lead to Fire?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -450
- No N/A
Here’s where things get interesting.
Will the protesters raise the stakes on Monday by setting fire to something?
To date, none of the actions taken in Charlotte have resembled anything near the intensity and destruction unleashed during the protests in May and June.
There usually needs to be a relatively large gathering of people for demonstrations to get out-of-control to the point of burning buildings and cars. The police can shut down crowds of 60-100 marching in the park and surrounding streets all day long.
If you’re betting on “yes” at –450
…you must feel confident that turnout for the protests will dramatically increase on Monday. You’re also relying on tensions to escalate between attendees and police.
We’ve seen a handful of people pepper-sprayed and arrested for “assaulting officers” and “refusing to obey lawful orders,” One was detained for riding around on a bicycle with a gun, but nothing crazy.
I don’t think we’ll see anything burned on Monday night. It’s not worth the trouble in a year when the protests aren’t even inconveniencing anyone because the entire convention is being shot remotely.
Trump’s Convention Speech RNC Props
Naturally, the main event of this week’s Republican National Convention spectacle is Donald Trump’s speech to accept the presidential nomination. BetOnline’s oddsmakers are evidently expecting it to feature many of the President’s “greatest hits.”
We can wager on an array of Trump’s favorite phrases and topics appearing in his speech – classics like “fake news,” “China virus,” “rigged,” and “Sleepy Joe” are all the subject of political betting lines!
And if you study the list of terms on which you may bet, it certainly paints a vivid picture of what kind of presidential speech we should expect!
How many “non-facts” will be said by Pres. Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Over 24½ non-facts -120
- Under 24½ non-facts -120
Of all the Donald Trump RNC prop bets, this one is my favorite. It’s also the hardest to predict and seemingly most subjective when it comes to calculating a total. In today’s media climate, especially, things like what constitutes “fact” or “fiction” are often in the eye of the beholder.
The political betting website offers the following information along with the odds:
Rules from BetOnline:
During RNC. All RNC scheduled speeches by Trump. Must be reported by the New York Times or Washington Post. Book manager’s decision is final.
“Must be reported by New York Times or Washington Post” – is the most vital information there. We know “non-facts” will be determined by two of the more liberal mainstream media publications – excellent news for the “over!”
It would also appear that the running tally of “non-facts” begins with his first scheduled participation in the convention broadcasts. That’s good; we’re working with more than just his renomination speech.
Keeping in mind that convention coverage provided by the New York Times and Washington Post will be responsible for defining what’s a fact and what isn’t, covering 24.5 lies looks like a no-brainer.
They’ll probably print a word-for-word transcript of every speech he gives and dissect every line — all in the spirit of “fact-checking.” And they’ll want to find as much wrong as possible. That raises the probability of “non-facts” being accepted by BetOnline‘s book manager.
Plus, Donald Trump loves to self promote. He makes lots of hyperbolic, braggadocious comments about himself and the job he’s doing. All excellent opportunities for the top liberal media gatekeepers to label each of the President’s self-congratulatory comments as a “non-fact.”
Expect jokes to be taken as serious statements, pedantic details blown up and analyzed, purposeful misinterpretations — all pushing that total towards the over!
Every time he says, “we’re doing fabulous work with the ‘China virus,’ that’s one! And we’ll probably get two “non-facts” for calling it the “china virus.”
When he says, “I built the best economy the country has ever seen,” they’ll find metrics that show why that’s a lie. When he calls Russiagate a “hoax” or warns that Democrats are planning to “rig the election with mail-in ballots,” they’ll take the liberal hardline every single time.
The more “non-facts” they count, the better!
We also know that Republicans are using the convention to draw the election battle-lines around culture and social issues.
Trump will have lots to say about Biden “ushering in socialism,” “raising taxes,” “taking your guns,” “eroding our values,” “defunding police,” “destroying this great nation,” “canceling our historic leaders and monuments,” etc.
The staffers at the NY Times and WaPo aren’t going to let a single one of those comments go unchecked – especially not with Biden dedicating so much of his platform to courting moderate Republicans (terrified of all things “socialism”).
If Donald Trump’s acceptance speech is 30 minutes long, I’d be willing to bet he covers the “over” less than 15 minutes in. Give me an extremely bullish “Over 24.5 non-facts (as determined by NY Times and WaPo)” at –120!!!
Will “China virus” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -350
- No +225
The better wager is:
Will Donald Trump say, “China virus” within the first 100 words he speaks at the convention?
By the way, I’d take “yes” under those conditions as well.
The pandemic is the single most significant variable impacting Americans’ pick for President this year. Perceptions around how Trump’s administration responded to the crisis sent the incumbent’s support among older voters – the most participatory demographic in our electoral process – plummeting.
Before that, he was a runaway favorite for reelection. So, covid has to be a central part of their sales pitch to voters.
What better way to avoid taking responsibility for the government’s response than using a pithy name to not-so-subtly blame (what’s believed to be) the virus’s country of origin for letting it spread in the first place?
Will “fake news” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -130
- No -110
Donald Trump is best understood by thinking of him as a professional wrestler. That’s the skillset he’s mastered and which he uses to garner support. One thing every great pro wrestler knows is to “get your shit in.”
That means hit all of your marks – more specifically, your most famous catchphrases. “Fake news” may not play as prominent a role in Trump’s vocabulary these days as it did four years ago, but the label is one of his most enduring cultural legacies at this point.
He has to say it at least once to instill that nostalgic ”us against the snobby establishment elitists” sentiment in his supporters. The reelection campaign has hit some rough patches since March; like a legendary rock band, he’ll need to play all the hits to bring excitement levels to where he needs them.
Yes, Trump will utter the phrase “fake news” during his convention speech. At –130, I’m taking that bet without hesitation.
Will “Goodyear” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +200
- No -300
This betting line is about the President’s recent call for Republicans to boycott Goodyear over a leaked picture of one of the company’s internal communications went viral.
If the RNC were a typical convention this year with an energetic live crowd, I’d expect him to air his grievances against the tire company to get a rise from his supporters. He won’t take that chance under this format.
Goodyear is headquartered in Ohio, a crucial battleground state. It’s trended red in recent election cycles, but Ohio is still competitive enough to be lost if Trump’s too brazen.
Plenty of the company’s employees probably support the President and disagree with the policies – which is why they leaked it. But Goodyear employs tens-of-thousands of Americans; calling for a boycott has the potential to hurt their bottom line, which costs regular working-class people their jobs.
You can’t be the “strong economy,” “putting people to work” candidate (before the pandemic lockdowns), and encourage actions that risk triggering layoffs in strategically essential battleground states.
Trump will drop the Goodyear stuff immediately and won’t amplify his regrettable tweet any further. “No,” at –300 is the pick for this one.
Will “hoax” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +135
- No -175
The President was at his strongest coming out of the impeachment trial.
Since then, Russiagate has been thoroughly disproven – if you’re willing to do the research and accept the truth – and revealed some ugly truths about what the Obama administration got away with last election cycle. It would be a bigger scandal than Watergate if people worried more about uncovering the truth than presenting every story through a hyper-partisan lense.
Regardless, Trump could rile up his base and potentially win over the “I hate both candidates” voters, highlighting the institutional corruption behind pushing four years of neo-McCarthyism to the American people.
Of course, he’ll probably fail to deconstruct the Russian narrative or present a coherent dismantling of what was done – he’ll just yell “hoax!” a lot, call it “Obamagate,” and say the former President is a traitor.
Either way, give me “Yes” on Trump saying “hoax” at +135.
Will “rigged” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -150
- No +110
I don’t even have to go into this one.
Republicans are more than twice as likely as Democrats to say they’re voting in person on Election Day versus by mail. He wants his supporters to feel a sense of urgency, to flood the polls at such a rate, their opponents can’t overcome their voices – even with ballot harvesting.
Plus, the problems at the US Postal Service have become a significant negative for the incumbent.
He’ll want to give his side of the story and mentally prep Republicans to challenge the results – maybe going as far as to hit the streets – if Trump is winning on Election Day, only to be wiped out by a flood of late-arriving mail-in ballots.
Will “Sleepy Joe” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +150
- No -200
This is another one that would be a no-brainer if it were a standard convention. The insults and nicknames always get a great reaction out of Trump crowds.
On the other hand, the “Sleepy Biden” attack hasn’t really landed. Sure, the former Vice President does seem quite sleepy – if not entirely out of it a lot of the time – and he does spend most of his time hiding in the basement, but people are okay with it.
The world has become so stressful and chaotic this year; Americans are perfectly happy with things becoming a big “sleepier.” Plus, calling Joe a name might come across too petty and cruel delivered from the White House lawn – even for Donald Trump.
It’s not the smart move politically, so I’m leaning towards “No.”
The betting odds are altering my thoughts on this a bit.
At +150, taking a chance on Trump doing something petty and tactically stupid isn’t the worst idea.
Will “witch hunt” be said by President Trump?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +150
- No -200
See: Will “hoax” be said by President Trump subsection.
Suppose the convention’s tone is such that Republicans are railing against their unfair treatment by the media and Washington liberals for four days.
In that case, it seems within reason to think he’d discuss Russiagate or the Ukraine trial – either of which could be considered “witch hunts.”
I’m not sure he’ll say both “witch hunts” and “hoax” in the same speech, but they’re both paying out better than even odds; why not take a shot?
I like “Yes” at +150, even though I think “hoax” is the likelier phrase to be said.
Other RNC Speaker Props
Rather than limiting their speaking slots to GOP officials and professional pols, Republicans are making their 2020 about “everday people.” They want to present themselves as the party of the working masses – in contrast to the affluent coastal liberals and academics on the other side.
Part of this strategy involves reminding viewers of the times “cancel culture” and woke liberals got it wrong or threatened “conservative values.” This is why several high-profile speakers – chosen to generate the predictable outrage they already have – were tapped to speak this week.
BetOnline is offering odds on speakers other than Trump, including a few of their more exciting speakers.
Will “Mount Rushmore” be said by any official speaker?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +115
- No -155
Like 75% of what fuels “Trumpism” is a desire to “own the libs.” People who are otherwise more left-leaning support the President because Democrats have become the party of censorship and identity politics.
As such, I would expect some of these speakers to make extremely outrageous statements about what a tremendous President and leader Donald Trump has been. And since he spoke before Mount Rushmore as recently as July 4, that image is fresh in people’s minds.
Someone will suggest adding President Trump’s face to Mt. Rushmore, sit back, and relish the next 48 hours of social media reactions (attention).
Give me another “Yes” at +115.
(Wow…if all of my “Yes” predictions are correct, this is going to be a ridiculous convention and such an insanely hilarious week of covering politics.)
Will “2nd amendment” be said by Mark or P.McCloskey?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -400
- No +250
You may remember the McCloskey’s as the lovely couple standing on their front lawn during a Black Lives Matter protest marching through their neighborhood pointing guns at passersby. They look like caricatures of upper-class, villainous, douchebags.
I don’t know anything about either of them personally, but the way they’re presented in the (admittedly limited) footage I’ve seen – him in a pink polo clutching an assault rifle, her using a handgun to point at people in a textbook “Karen-y” way – is comically obnoxious.
Considering their known for one thing – and one thing only – I’d have to think their presentation will center around guns and defending one’s home from “rioters and looters.” So, how could they NOT discuss 2nd Amendment rights?
Gotta go with “Yes” at –400, despite the lack of betting value.
Will “all lives matter” be said by Mark or P.McCloskey?
- Markets Odds
- Yes -275
- No +185
I don’t even know what to write about this one.
If Mark and Patricia embrace being professional wrestling heels and take their speech in a direction that results in them saying, “all lives matter,” can you imagine the hatred they’ll generate?
Is there anywhere you could live comfortably after doing something that purposefully triggering and counter to the current popular narratives around race in this country? You’d have the highest-profile personalities on the planet calling you out.
Holy crap, “Yes” is heavily favored!!! -275?!?!
I have to go with “No” at +185 here; nobody is that self-destructive and desirous of conflict, right?!
(I’m betting “No” here, but inside, my soul is genuinely yearning to see what happens if they go there. It’s not something I would do, and I don’t want anyone’s feelings to be hurt by the comment, but I can’t pretend like I’m not excited for the chaos.)
Will “Nathan Philips” be said by Nicholas Sandmann?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +170
- No -250
Nicholas Sandmann is the Covington High School kid who was accused of “face crime” similar to Orwell’s 1984.
Nick was part of a group of students on a trip to Washington DC. At some point, some of them apparently bought MAGA hats from a street vendor.
During one of their tours, a group of Black Hebrew Israelites started hurling slurs and insults in their direction before the popularized footage began. Some Native American protesters saw the commotion and decided to join in on the confrontation with the kids.
This second group included Nathan Phillips, who got in Sandmann’s face and started banging his drum.
Bewildered by the moment – and appearing slightly amused – the kid froze. The awkward moment was caught on camera. The rest was history.
The media took the footage and worked the public into an absolute frenzy, weaving a fabricated story about these kids harassing Native Americans and standing in their way.
Instantly, Sandmann’s slightly embarrassed grin was made to become the picture of racism and white entitlement.
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren accused the high school students of levying “hateful taunts” at Philips. (Of all the people to comment on this story! The make-believe Native American herself!)
- Bill Maher called him a “little prick.”
- CNN’s Bakari Sellers said Nick should have been “punched in the face.”
- And there were many more celebrities, politicians, and media figures who piled on!
His participation in the RNC will serve as a beacon of what can happen when “cancel culture” not only gets it wrong but is then unleashed upon an average bystander. He will also be used to remind audiences how cruel and relentless liberals and wealthy Democrats can be – “even towards kids!”
People don’t like seeing innocent kids bullied by wealthy celebrities.
In an election becoming increasingly focused on social issues and “culture wars,” Nick Sandmann appearing at the convention is an enormous asset, especially when online liberals take the bait and start attacking him all over again for his speech.
All of that said, no, I don’t think Sandmann will namecheck the idiot who set into motion this chain of events with his drumming. Why give him the satisfaction or attention?
Also, they’ll want him to appear classy and undeserving of the negative attention he received. Coming out and talking about Philips could come across as gloating or seeking retribution.
“No” to Nathan Philips being mentioned at –250 is the pick.
Will Mark McCloskey be wearing a pink shirt?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +425
- No -800
The guy agreed to speak at the Republican National Convention after gaining infamy with his pink shirt-rifle combo; the pink shirt making a return is definitely in the cards.
At these odds, — screw it – I think he’ll do it!
Mark McCloskey is the same guy who, after being charged with a felony for gun crimes related to the incident with the protesters, told reporters he’d do it all over again.
Journalists also found a quote in an old deposition of Mark admitting to pointing a gun his neighbor over a 1,143 square foot triangle of grass during a dispute over its ownership.
These two are something else.</em
Lean into it, McCloskey’s! Embrace the hate and rock the pink shirt again!
At +425 odds, “Yes” is my fun underdog pick of the convention.
Will Mark or P. McCloskey be holding a firearm?
- Markets Odds
- Yes +350
- No -600
BetOnline sees a lot of potential in the McCloskey family spicing this convention all the way up!
Well, if we’re counting on them wearing the pink shirt again, why should Mark leave out the other memorable part of those pictures? It wouldn’t feel complete to commit to the throwback without the AR-15.
And again, we can’t underestimate how much of this Republican National Convention will be explicitly designed to trigger and instigate emotional reactions from Democrats.
I’ll go one further:
I bet he gives his brief speech in the pink shirt, gun in hand, standing on the same precise triangle of grass that has already inspired him to brandish his rifle on two other occasions.
Bring it all the way back around full-circle.
Mark me down as a STRONG “Yes” on at least one of the McCloskey’s holding a firearm during their convention presentation! +350 all day, baby!