talk tough


: to say that one will act in a forceful and aggressive way
When the subject is national security, all the candidates talk tough.
often + on
The new mayor talks tough on crime.

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Beard is white, gets in his players’ faces, loves to talk tough. Tim Cowlishaw, Dallas News, 13 Mar. 2023 Controversial Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva frequently uses social media to talk tough about crime, dismiss claims of widespread police brutality and call out his critics. Justin Ray, Los Angeles Times, 28 Feb. 2022 President Biden took the podium to talk tough and show resolve. Andrew C. Mccarthy, National Review, 24 Feb. 2022 It was broadcast after Trump, who seems certain to seek a return to the Oval Office in 2024, was beginning to talk tough about potential primary opponents. Michael D'antonio, CNN, 5 Oct. 2021 President Biden hasn’t been afraid to talk tough and set expectations with Vladimir Putin, but will Mr. Biden enforce his own red lines? The Editorial Board, WSJ, 7 July 2021 Although Biden is planning to talk tough in Geneva, the goal is to ease tensions and establish predictability on both sides by reining in Putin’s adventurism. Brian Bennett, Time, 11 June 2021 In surveys, respondents can be brave and talk tough. Jack Kelly, Forbes, 8 June 2021 Siraj liked to talk tough, but this was different. New York Times, 15 Apr. 2021 See More

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

Dictionary Entries Near talk tough

Cite this Entry

“Talk tough.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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