cover one's/your ass (CYA)

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cover (one's) ass

rude slang To act in order to avoid blame or responsibility for something or prevent oneself from experiencing negative consequences. I immediately covered my ass by saying that I wasn't home when the puppy got out. Politicians don't care about the outcome of the vote, they just care about covering their asses.
See also: ass, cover
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

cover one's/your ass (CYA)

Protect oneself in case of failure, avoid being blamed for something. This rather rude expression dates from the 1950s and may have originated in the military. It has since been used in many different contexts. For example, the McLaughlin Group, a television panel, used the acronymic form: “Is he a hero . . . [or] a CYA practitioner?” (July 26, 1987).
See also: ass, cover
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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