Trend Watch

Flynn Offers to Testify in Exchange for Immunity

'Exemption from a charge, duty, obligation, office, tax, imposition, penalty, or service'

Lookups for immunity spiked over 2500% over the hourly average after The Wall Street Journal reported that a recent national security adviser was interested in the subject.

Mike Flynn, President Trump’s former national security adviser, has told the FBI and congressional committees investigating the Trump campaign’s potential ties to Russia that he is willing to be interviewed in exchange for a grant of immunity from prosecution, according to officials with knowledge of the matter.
—Shane Harris, Carol E. Lee, and Julian E. Barnes,, 30 Mar. 2017

Immunity comes from the Latin word immunis, which means “exempt from public service.” It has been in use in English for a considerable length of time (since the 14th century). The initial meaning of the word was typically more concerned with freedom or exemption from some public duty, obligation, or tax; the more common meaning today is concerned with an exemption from a legal penalty.

Trend Watch tracks and reports on the words that people are looking up. You can see all the Trend Watch articles here.

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