- a candidate for an office linked with another and more important office, as for the vice-presidency.
- a horse entered in a race in which another, more important, horse from the same stable, or belonging to the same owner, is run.
- a close companion.
Origin of running mate
An Americanism dating back to 1865–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for running mate
Running-Mate Question Allows Candidates to Flatter Each Other If ever there was an “Are we in high school?”GOP’s Most Awkward Debate Moments: Crying, Flip-Flops, More (Video)
The Daily Beast
February 23, 2012
She and George Pataki did not know each other when he asked her to be his running-mate.Return of the Health Care Villains
March 18, 2009
Why Madero insists on that running-mate we don't understand.
It is rumored that from the state of sisal and henequen he will pick his running-mate.
She was treated, accordingly, as some exquisite chorus-girl or cabaret-pony that he had selected as a running-mate.We Can't Have Everything
She took good care to choose Désirée for her "running-mate," and as they were both fleet of foot they scored considerably.The Jolliest School of All
- US a candidate for the subordinate of two linked positions, esp a candidate for the vice-presidency
- a horse that pairs another in a team