- gained by association with another, especially with a successful or celebrated person: coattail benefits.
- on someone's coattails, aided by association with another person: The senator rode into office on the president's coattails.
- on the coattails of, immediately after or as a result of: His decline in popularity followed on the coattails of the scandal.
Origin of coattail
Examples from the Web for coattails
On the other, if he squeaks out a victory in a GOP wave year, Republicans may be skeptical that he has coattails.It’s Do or Die for Scott Walker in Wisconsin
August 8, 2014
Not only are they riding the coattails of men, but they are no longer even with these men.How Elin Nordegren Became a Trophy Wife Role Model
May 12, 2014
The numbers will ride, as it were, on the coattails of the vision.Even Republicans Don’t Like the Ryan Budget
April 8, 2014
Because I left to create a name for myself–and not to ride on any of her coattails.Brad Goreski: On Styling, His New Show & Leaving Rachel Zoe
December 20, 2011
They aren't eager young design students hoping to score someone's extra invitation or sneak in on a kindly editor's coattails.Paris Fashion Week Frenzy: Let’s Focus on Clothes
March 9, 2011
Anyhow, Denboro won't hang onto his coattails to hold him back.The Rise of Roscoe Paine
Joseph C. Lincoln
A marriage,—yes; but Frank has only just got into coattails!My Novel, Complete
He came towards them at an amble, scratching actively behind his coattails.Ulysses
All I ask is a block's start an' some wan holdin' th' polisman's coattails.Mr. Dooley Says
Morris ran to the store door and grabbed Hymie by the coattails.Potash & Perlmutter
Word Origin and History for coattails
also coat-tail, c.1600, from coat (n.) + tail (n.). In 17c., to do something on one's own coattail meant "at one's own expense. Meaning "power of one person," especially in politics, is from 1848 (in a Congressional speech by Abraham Lincoln, in reference to Andrew Jackson); expression riding (someone's) coattails into political office is from 1949.