- The Washington Times - Friday, January 13, 2023

Friday night’s Mega Millions drawing gave Americans their shot at the game’s second-biggest jackpot in the game’s history and the fourth-biggest prize in U.S. lottery history.

The winning numbers were 30-43-45-46-61, with the Mega Ball being 14.

“Now at $1.35 billion, the Mega Millions jackpot is moving up and making history as the second highest Mega Millions jackpot ever,” Pat McDonald, lead director of the Mega Millions Consortium, said in a statement earlier this week after the 25th drawing in a row produced no winner Tuesday.

There have been just six billion-dollar jackpots in U.S. history, though three have been in just the past year, thanks to rule changes designed to make the pots grow faster.

The $1.35 billion drawing comes just two months after the biggest U.S. lottery prize ever, a $2.04 billion Powerball jackpot that was won Nov. 8 in California but remains unclaimed after more than two months.

If taken in a single massive payment, as most recent big lottery winners have chosen to do, Tuesday’s $1.35 million prize would be worth $707.9 million. The larger, advertised amount is what the other option — a 29-year annuity — would be worth over its lifetime.

Federal taxes would quickly take almost 40% of that amount, with state taxes a possibility on top of that.

The $2 Mega Millions tickets are sold in 45 states, along with the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The odds of a winning Mega Millions ticket are 1 in 302.5 million.

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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