800-pound gorilla

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800-pound gorilla

A person, group, or organization so powerful (either by size or by influence) that it does not need to heed the rules or threats of others. It refers to the riddle "Where does an 800-pound gorilla sit?" (Answer: "Wherever it likes.") Primarily heard in US. Don't mess with that guy; he's like an 800-pound gorilla! These big corporations act like 800-pound gorillas, making up the rules to suit themselves. Unfortunately, Washington is full of 800-pound gorillas, so good luck getting anything done as a representative.
See also: gorilla
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Synopsis: Yahweh to Hell comes at a time in our nation's political discourse when the eight-hundred pound gorilla in the room is Christian Dominionism.
Synopsis: "Yahweh to Hell: Why We Need Jesus Out of Politics!" comes at a time in our nation's political discourse when the eight-hundred pound gorilla in the room is Christian Dominionism.