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A.Word.A.Day--October surprise

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October surprise (ok-TOH-buhr suhr-PRYZ) noun

A last minute surprise, especially one orchestrated by a candidate to influence an election.

[The US presidential elections take place on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. The idea of an October surprise stems from the belief that a significant event taking place just before the election would influence the voters and change the result. The term originated in the 1980 US presidential elections. US embassy personnel were held hostage in Tehran, leading to speculation that the incumbent president would secure their release just before the election, in order to boost his prospects for re-election.]

See more on October surprise from Wikipedia, an online collaborative encyclopedia.

"'Consumers should get ready for an October surprise from their banks when this new check processing law is implemented,' said Gail Hillebrand, senior attorney with Consumer's Union." Teresa Mcusic; Savvy Consumer: New Law Raises Your Risk of Bouncing Checks; Fort Wayne News Sentinel (Indiana); Sep 27, 2004.

"The possibility of a US October surprise on North Korea was flatly rejected yesterday by Washington's top envoy to Seoul." Choi Soung-ah; 'No US October Surprise in Korea'; Korea Herald (Seoul, South Korea); Oct 8, 2004.

This week's theme: words from politics and elections.


Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -Aldous Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)

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