su·​per·​ma·​jor·​i·​ty | \ ˈsü-pər-mə-ˌjȯr-ə-tē How to pronounce supermajority (audio) , -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

Despite the obvious extent of the crisis and a supermajority of Democrats in Sacramento, neither the governor nor the Legislature are making significant progress on legislation. Mercury News & East Bay Times Editorial Boards, The Mercury News, "Editorial: Don’t give up on efforts to house the homeless," 4 June 2019 Team bylaws require 40 percent of eligible voters to participate for the result to be valid and any firing needs a two-thirds supermajority. Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times, "Fire Garth? Sounders fans to vote on GM Lagerwey’s fate during tumultuous season finally trending upward," 21 Aug. 2018 To have any chance of passage, an amendment will need a 60-vote supermajority. Carolyn Lochhead, San Francisco Chronicle, "Senate opens rare debate on fate of ‘Dreamers,’ Trump’s wall," 12 Feb. 2018 The outcomes of the two contests aren’t likely to affect the balance of power in the state Senate, where Democrats hold a two-thirds supermajority. Phil Willon,, "Two California Senate special elections will bring only one new face to Sacramento," 4 June 2019 In practice, the supermajority requirement gave the oil industry veto power over the bill. David Roberts, Vox, "California’s cap-and-trade system may be too weak to do its job," 12 Dec. 2018 The day before the meeting, Redstone had changed the board’s bylaws to require a 90 percent supermajority for any motion to carry. Michael J. De La Merced,, "Judge rejects CBS’s move to strip Shari Redstone’s control of company," 17 May 2018 Democrats, who face a supermajority of Republicans in both the House and Senate, noted some success as well but also lamented what could have been. Keith Ridler, The Seattle Times, "Idaho Legislature wraps up session that ends with acrimony," 11 Apr. 2019 But a supermajority of the Legislature is needed to place such an initiative on the 2020 ballot. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Blue State Challenge," 24 Dec. 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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Statistics for supermajority

Last Updated

7 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for supermajority

The first known use of supermajority was in 1915

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More Definitions for supermajority


su·​per·​ma·​jor·​i·​ty | \ ˈsü-pər-mə-ˌjȯr-ə-tē How to pronounce supermajority (audio) \

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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