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had (just) as soon do something

 and would (just) as soon do something
prefer to do something else; to be content to do something. (The would or had is usually expressed as the contraction 'd.) They want me to go into town. I'd as soon stay home. If you're cooking stew tonight, we'd as soon eat somewhere else. I would just as soon stay home as pay to go to see a bad movie.
See also: soon

prefer someone or something to someone (or something else)

to rank the desirability of someone or something over someone or something else. For the post of treasurer, I prefer Don to Jill. I prefer missing a meal to Jill's cooking.
See also: prefer

prefer something against someone

to file legal charges against someone [with the police]; to file a complaint or a charge against someone. The neighbors preferred charges against the driver of the car who ruined their lawns. I will not prefer charges against the driver, since it was partly my fault.
See also: prefer
References in classic literature ?
So, preferring death to capture, I accomplished the most astonishing deeds, and which, more than once, showed me that the too great care we take of our bodies is the only obstacle to the success of those projects which require rapid decision, and vigorous and determined execution.
It will be recollected that these free trappers, who were masters of themselves and their movements, had refused to accompany Captain Bonneville back to Green River in the preceding month of July, preferring to trap about the upper waters of the Salmon River, where they expected to find plenty of beaver, and a less dangerous neighborhood.
Here the friends parted, Mary Warren preferring to walk home, while Julia and I entered the house together.
He was a contemplative, rather stout gentleman, of excellent digestion; of quiet perceptions, undiseased by hypothesis; happy in his inability to know the causes of things, preferring the things themselves.
All were of this mind save only Juno, Neptune, and Jove's grey-eyed daughter, who persisted in the hate which they had ever borne towards Ilius with Priam and his people; for they forgave not the wrong done them by Alexandrus in disdaining the goddesses who came to him when he was in his sheepyards, and preferring her who had offered him a wanton to his ruin.
He held the position until 1886, preferring it to in-door clerical work, and then resigned, the duties becoming too arduous for his failing strength.
For weeks he would lounge around the taverns of the county, in a state of perfect idleness, or doing small jobs for his liquor and his meals, and cavilling with applicants about the prices of his labor; frequently preferring idleness to an abatement of a little of his independence, or a cent in his wages.
no doubt he is very sincere in preferring an income ready made, to the trouble of working for one; and has the best intentions of doing nothing all the rest of his days but eat, drink, and grow fat.
No sooner did the trio of Kentucky hunters, Robinson, Rezner, and Hoback, find that they could once more be fitted out for a campaign of beaver-trapping, than they forgot all that they had suffered, and determined upon another trial of their fortunes; preferring to take their chance in the wilderness, rather than return home ragged and penniless.