fed·​er·​al·​ist | \ ˈfe-d(ə-)rə-list How to pronounce federalist (audio) \

Definition of federalist

1 : an advocate of federalism: such as
a often capitalized : an advocate of a federal union between the American colonies after the Revolution and of the adoption of the U.S. Constitution
b often capitalized : world federalist
2 capitalized : a member of a major political party in the early years of the U.S. favoring a strong centralized national government

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Other Words from federalist

federalist adjective, often capitalized

Examples of federalist in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The country was strained by the two great dividing lines of the mid 19th century: federalists against nationalists, and liberals against conservatives. Dan Mclaughlin, National Review, "The Real History of Cinco de Mayo," 5 May 2020 Undeterred, European federalists, led by Macron, see the coronavirus as an opportunity to advance their project. Peter Rough, National Review, "The European Union Needs More National Flexibility," 22 Apr. 2020 But the prospect of the U.K. sticking around for European elections and the appointment of a new Commission threatens to drive a wedge between traditional liberal allies such as the Netherlands and Germany and federalists like France. Washington Post, "Europe Is Preparing for the End of Theresa May," 19 Sep. 2019 His consultancy, North Star Research, is based in a stately federalist row house in Alexandria. Alexander Nazaryan, Newsweek, "Can Donald Trump, the Most Unpopular President Ever, Save Republicans From a Massive Defeat in 2018?," 21 Feb. 2018 The Federalists against the Anti-federalists, Abraham Lincoln against Stephen Douglas, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. against George Wallace. Time, "Colleges Are an 'Echo Chamber of Political Correctness.' Read Jeff Sessions' Speech on Campus Free Speech," 11 Sep. 2017 That Senate Republicans have introduced legislation allowing states to waive out of some—not all, but just some—of ObamaCare’s myriad mandates should give true federalists little comfort. WSJ, "The Senate Isn’t Saving the 10th Amendment," 11 July 2017 Sadly, the Trump administration and the GOP are far from the only fair-weather federalists in politics. Ilya Somin, National Review, "No More Fair-Weather Federalism," 18 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'federalist.' 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 federalist

1774, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of federalist was in 1774

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Cite this Entry

“Federalist.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/federalist. Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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How to pronounce federalist (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of federalist

: a supporter of federal government especially, US : a supporter of the U.S. Constitution
US : a member of a major political party in the early years of the U.S. that wanted a strong central government

More from Merriam-Webster on federalist

Nglish: Translation of federalist for Spanish Speakers

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