litmus test was our Word of the Day on 05/17/2013. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of litmus test in a Sentence
The party is using attitudes about gun control as a litmus test for political candidates.
Recent Examples of litmus test from the Web
Thus differences over whether the federal government should offer a public health-insurance option or introduce a single-payer system can become litmus tests for the party’s progressive wing.
First, Republican Party platforms are now open and explicit about policy litmus tests for Supreme Court nominees.
Stance on family separation is a litmus test to identify the essential moral fiber necessary to be a good community leader.
Here’s a look at the origin of what could be a new litmus test for the left, and the arguments for and against Democrats staking out a more extreme position on immigration.
Keeping him to build around would be a litmus test of the Jeter regime's commitment to winning.
Governments around the world, and especially in Europe, are increasingly inclined to use such concerns as a litmus test for Chinese investments to protect their competitive edge.
The question of which feels truer to Kirk, and to Trek, serves as a litmus test for fans of the show.
Messer is running for the Senate in Indiana, where support for Trump has become a litmus test for Republican voters.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'litmus test.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
litmus test Has Scientific Origins
It was in the 14th century that scientists discovered that litmus, a mixture of colored organic compounds obtained from lichen, turns red in acid solutions and blue in alkaline solutions and, thus, can be used as an acid-base indicator. Six centuries later, people began using litmus test figuratively. It can now refer to any single factor that establishes the true character of something or causes it to be assigned to one category or another. Often it refers to something (such as an opinion about a political or moral issue) that can be used to make a judgment about whether someone or something is acceptable or not.
LITMUS TEST Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of litmus test for English Language Learners
: something (such as an opinion about a political or moral issue) that is used to make a judgment about whether someone or something is acceptable
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