defection

noun
de·fec·tion | \di-ˈfek-shən \

Definition of defection 

: conscious abandonment of allegiance or duty (as to a person, cause, or doctrine) : desertion

Examples of defection in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But Manchin, Heitkamp and Donnelly voted to confirm Gorsuch along with 51 Republicans last year, and potentially could offset any GOP defections. Brooke Singman, Fox News, "Supreme Court battle: Conservative group vows to spend $10M backing Trump pick," 10 July 2018 If McCain were to miss the vote, only one GOP defection would be needed to block the nomination if all Democrats were opposed. Kevin Freking, chicagotribune.com, "What to expect in the Supreme Court confirmation battle," 9 July 2018 If McCain were to miss the vote, only one GOP defection would be needed to block the nomination if all Democrats were opposed. Kevin Freking, The Seattle Times, "What to expect in the Supreme Court confirmation battle," 9 July 2018 And with the ailing Arizona Sen. John McCain away from Washington, any GOP defections could begin to imperil a nominee. Catherine Lucey, Washington Post, "Trump mulls Supreme Court choice from 2 or 3 candidates," 7 July 2018 And with the ailing Arizona Sen. John McCain away from Washington, any GOP defections could begin to doom a nominee. Catherine Lucey, Zeke Miller And Ken Thomas, Houston Chronicle, "Trump weighs 2 or 3 candidates for court, to meet with Pence," 6 July 2018 But many details of the defection remained a mystery and fueled suspicion, including how the restaurant workers managed to plot their escape despite being trained to spy on one another for signs of disloyalty. New York Times, "Tale of North Korean Waitresses Who Fled to South Takes Dark Turn," 11 May 2018 Republicans will soon have an 18-14 margin in the Senate, meaning that if all Democrats oppose the tax credit bill then two GOP defections could block or force changes to it. Patrick Marley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker touts child tax credit and broad agenda. So how much passes?," 25 Jan. 2018 With such little room for defection, groups on both sides of the aisle have targeted different Senators who might make or break the nomination. Alana Abramson, Time, "Pro-Trump Group Launches Ads Urging Red State Democrats to Confirm Brett Kavanaugh," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'defection.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of defection

1532, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for defection

borrowed from Latin dēfectiōn-, dēfectiō "falling short, failure, abandonment of allegiance," from dēficere "to be lacking, fail, become disaffected, go over (to the side of an opponent)" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at deficient

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Statistics for defection

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for defection

The first known use of defection was in 1532

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