get tough on

idiomatic phrase

: to deal harshly with
Greece promised last week to get tough on tax evasion …Alan Clendenning
Environmental groups and health agencies such as the American Lung Association have pushed lawmakers to get tough on polluters and enact stricter smog limits …Melissa Knopper
"… For a long time in the United States, the politics around law and order have been, get tough on crime. … "Paul Butler

Examples of get tough on in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web These are some key issues being deliberated in secret: How to get tough on crime: Lawmakers have spent months crafting a package of bills to address retail theft and fentanyl addiction. Laurel Rosenhall, Los Angeles Times, 17 June 2024 Biden has retained many of Trump’s positions on China, and a bipartisan consensus has emerged in Washington that the United States must get tougher on its closest geopolitical peer. Zhou Bo, Foreign Affairs, 13 May 2024 Sacramento needs to get tougher on these adult temper tantrums. Rick Hurd, The Mercury News, 19 Apr. 2024 The White House initially portrayed the decision to pair immigration with the military funding request as an enticement, or at the very least an attempt at compromise, to win over Republicans who had been calling on Mr. Biden to get tougher on the border. Erica L. Green, New York Times, 19 Jan. 2024 Vowing to get tougher on lax retailers, the Biden administration in 2021 announced a far stricter policy in which even one serious violation would result in the ATF moving to revoke a license. Vernal Coleman, ProPublica, 11 Dec. 2023 Washington’s concerns with Beijing’s rollback of reforms, heightened domestic repression, military buildup, and assertiveness overseas since Mr. Xi took power in 2012 have united key American constituencies in a rare bipartisan consensus to get tough on China. Jacob Turcotte, The Christian Science Monitor, 13 Nov. 2023 The latest from California Washington is getting tough on China. David Lauter, Los Angeles Times, 3 Nov. 2023 Lately streaming service news has been all about price hikes, the introduction of ads, getting tougher on password sharing, and even unreliable performance. John Timmer, Ars Technica, 1 Nov. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'get tough on.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1945, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of get tough on was in 1945

Dictionary Entries Near get tough on

Cite this Entry

“Get tough on.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2024.

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