the root of the problem

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the root of the problem

The underlying cause or fundamental essence of some issue, problem, or difficulty at hand. Our team of professionals will walk you through a troubleshooting process that will help get to the root of whatever problem you're experiencing with your device. Here's the root of the problem, Bill—we feel that you haven't been meeting the standards of work that we expect of you recently. If the politicians in Washington would stop all their games and mudslinging for a minute might actually be able to solve the root of the problems affecting our country.
See also: of, problem, root

*root of the problem

an understanding of the causes or basis of a problem. (*Typically: determine ~; figure out ~; find ~; get to ~; get at ~.) It will take a little more study to get to the root of the problem. Let's stop avoiding the issue and get at the root of the problem.
See also: of, problem, root
References in periodicals archive ?
But it's been a tale of woe throughout 2014, with club chairman Bernard Guasch having already held clear-theair talks with the coaching staff in a bid to get to the root of the problems.
I think we will be able to decide on a new programme for Greece that will attack the root of the problems, she told reporters, referring to the emergency aid Greece needs to avert a disastrous debt default.
RE knife culture in the UK and the efforts to tackle it by the government, it's all very well blaming yobs and talking about punishments, but what is at the root of the problems?
At the root of the problems has been poor public policy that has resulted in misguided investments and very weak financial sectors.
The root of the problems are merger talks between Wolverhampton Chamber of Training, Commerce and Enterprise - which comprises the town's chamber and training and enterprise council - and the TECs in Dudley and Sandwell.