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ward heeler

noun, U.S. Politics.
a minor politician who canvasses voters and does other chores for a political machine or party boss.
Origin of ward heeler
An Americanism dating back to 1885-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ward heeler
Historical Examples
  • From ward heeler to worshipful woman, this subterranean trickster is charged with selection of the tool that will turn the trick.

    Criminal Types V. M. Masten
British Dictionary definitions for ward heeler

ward heeler

(US, politics, derogatory) a party worker who canvasses votes and performs chores for a political boss Also called heeler
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for ward heeler

ward heeler

noun phrase

A low-ranking associate or flunky of a political boss; a menial crony

[1890+; fr heeler, ''a loafer, one on the lookout for shady work''; in the 1870s the ward heeler was known simply as heeler or as ward-bummer]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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