With an estimated record $1.9 billion jackpot, Monday night’s scheduled Powerball drawing left players confused.
According to CNN, that’s because Powerball officials didn’t draw any numbers. As of Monday night and early Tuesday morning, the Powerball website stated only that the drawing was supposed to take place on “November 7, 2022 @10:59 PM EST,” and added “Results Pending” below the message, sparking a wave of skepticism on social media.
“We look forward to drawing the winning numbers as soon as possible,” a statement from the Multi-State Lottery Association read early Tuesday morning. “Like the rest of America, Powerball is eager to hold its drawing for the world record jackpot; however, protecting the integrity of the draw is of upmost importance, even if that means a further delay.”
Lottery officials explained in a statement why no drawing took place, blaming one “participating lottery” for not having fully processed its “sales and play data,” causing an unprecedented delay in drawing for the life-changing Powerball prize.
The latest from #Powerball officials. pic.twitter.com/oqwzFNBk9R
— CA Lottery Press (@calotterypress) November 8, 2022
The statement concluded by telling players to “hold onto their ticket.”
Later on Tuesday morning, Powerball officials finally drew the winning numbers and updated the Powerball website.
“JUST IN – CHECK YOUR LOTTERY TICKETS: The winning numbers for the record $1.9 billion Powerball jackpot are out after delay,” Insider Paper tweeted with an image of the winning numbers.
JUST IN – CHECK YOUR LOTTERY TICKETS: The winning numbers for the record $1.9 billion Powerball jackpot are out after delay pic.twitter.com/Ff39FPQIJv
— Insider Paper (@TheInsiderPaper) November 8, 2022
In a tweeted statement, the California Lottery went into further detail regarding the unusual and extremely rare delay in drawing numbers.
“Tonight’s Powerball® drawing has been delayed due to a participating lottery needing extra time to complete the required security protocols. Powerball has strict security requirements that must be met by all 48 lotteries before a drawing can occur,” California Lottery tweeted in a two-part statement.
It added, “When the required security protocols are complete, the drawing will be performed under the supervision of lottery security officials and independent auditors. Winning numbers will be posted as soon as they are available. Thank you for your patience.”
When the required security protocols are complete, the drawing will be performed under the supervision of lottery security officials and independent auditors. Winning numbers will be posted as soon as they are available. Thank you for your patience. (2/2)
— California Lottery (@calottery) November 8, 2022
Still, the situation sparked an avalanche of questions and conspiracy theories on social media. The fact that it happened on the eve of Election Day exacerbated those theories.
Powerball drawing delayed due to technical difficulty?
— Nicole Schuman, M.A. (@Buffalogal) November 8, 2022
“Powerball drawing delayed due to technical difficulty? Sounds suspicious,” one Twitter user wrote.
$1.9 Billion #Powerball drawing suspended because of technical difficulties on the eve of a midterm election to determine the balance of power when it’s a full moon?!!!!
— Brendan Keefe (@BrendanKeefe) November 8, 2022
If an individual or group managed to match the winning numbers for the record jackpot just shy of $2 billion — the largest jackpot in lottery history — they will have the option of taking a 29-year annuity or cashing out with a lump sum of about $929 million, Fortune reported.
If there no winners for the most recent drawing, the Powerball jackpot is expected to soar to well over $2 billion for the next drawing scheduled for Wednesday night.
Gambling is a losing game for the majority of those who play, and even many winners lose over time. According to CNBC, “Lottery winners are more likely to declare bankruptcy within three to five years than the average American.”
Gambling can also be an addiction. If you or someone you know has a gambling addiction, call the National Council on Problem Gambling at 1-800-522-4700 or visit their website. The National Problem Gambling Helpline Network also provides text and chat services at the number provided above.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.