su·​per·​ma·​jor·​i·​ty | \ˈsü-pər-mə-ˌjȯr-ə-tē, -ˌjär-\
plural supermajorities

Definition of supermajority 

: a majority (such as two-thirds or three-fifths) that is greater than a simple majority treaty ratification requires a supermajority Furthermore, it is about even money that soon after Congress convenes in January it will … approve a constitutional amendment to require supermajorities (three-fifths) in both houses of Congress to approve deficit spending.— George F. Will The company, for instance, has a supermajority clause in its articles of incorporation; 80% of the shareholders must approve any sale or merger.— Joshua Hyatt

Examples of supermajority in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

For well over a decade, a supermajority of Americans believe the country is headed in the wrong direction. New York Times, "America Has Gone Off the Rails. Steven Brill Sees Ways to Get It Back on Track.," 2 July 2018 What’s more, the Senate would have to summon a supermajority of two-thirds for a conviction. Allen C. Guelzo, WSJ, "Impeach Trump? History Counsels Against It," 25 May 2018 Almost-complete results showed by the following morning that Fidesz was likely to have won a two-thirds supermajority in Parliament, with 133 of 199 seats, enough to alter the constitution. The Economist, "Hungary’s illiberal prime minister, Viktor Orban, wins a landslide," 9 Apr. 2018 The California Republican Party has already used the taxes, which are generally unpopular with the public, to recall a state senator who voted for the plan, thereby erasing Democrats' supermajority in the Senate. Alexei Koseff, sacbee, "What you need to know about California's gas tax repeal initiative," 25 June 2018 Democrats have a supermajority in the statehouse, limiting what any Republican governor can do. The Economist, "Bruce Rauner discovers bipartisanship," 5 July 2018 The measure would have forced supermajority, rather than simple majority, votes to implement new local and state taxes or raise existing ones. Sy Mukherjee, Fortune, "The Crazy Story Behind Why California Just Banned Soda Taxes," 29 June 2018 Brown's win led to an end of a Democratic supermajority in the Senate, allowing Republicans to filibuster. Jessica Estepa, USA TODAY, "Before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, here are 5 of the biggest U.S. political upsets," 27 June 2018 The controversy likely marks a setback for Democrats, who are trying to win Republican seats in swing districts and secure a supermajority in the state House. Tom James, The Seattle Times, "House Democrats pull support from candidate in key district," 26 June 2018

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

1915, in the meaning defined above

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10 Nov 2018

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The first known use of supermajority was in 1915

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su·​per·​ma·​jor·​i·​ty | \ˈsü-pər-mə-ˌjȯr-ə-tē \

Legal Definition of supermajority 

: a large majority a provision requiring a supermajority vote — say, 80 % of the common shares instead of the usual bare majority rule— R. C. Clark

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