rats deserting a sinking ship

rats deserting a sinking ship

People who begin to abandon something or someone that is failing or about to fail with great haste and having only personal well-being in mind. The phrase can also be used in the singular, but this is less common. After the new party leader's embarrassing and incendiary comments, many have begun distancing themselves from him and the party's ethos, giving the impression of rats deserting a sinking ship. It's true that I am resigning, but I am not a rat deserting a sinking ship: I have full confidence in this company, I am merely changing course in my career.
See also: desert, rat, ship, sink

rats deserting a sinking ship

people hurrying to get away from an enterprise or organization that is failing. informal
See also: desert, rat, ship, sink
References in periodicals archive ?
"They are like rats deserting a sinking ship. They should be ashamed of themselves because they have left 700 working class folk on the dole."
TALK about rats deserting a sinking ship! Where is Gordon Brown?
Jon Cruddas, MP for Dagenham, is absolutely right to point out that core voters are abandoning Labour like rats deserting a sinking ship.
JERMAIN DEFOE must have set some sort of a record in the tradition of rats deserting a sinking ship when he slapped in his transfer request while West Ham fans were still crying into their first pint of post-relegation beer.
Two Republican presidential candidates hope that it is not a case of rats deserting a sinking ship, but there have been some embarrassing defections lately.