splinter group(redirected from splinter groups)
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A group, organization, or movement of people that separates or departs from a larger group due to having divergent ideas, ideology, goals, plans, etc. The splinter group consists of radicals who broke from the orthodox church to form a new ministry based on religious extremism. The group of politicians, lobbyists, and activists had the ambition of becoming a new political party, but they never grew into anything more than a minor splinter group that dissipated after the following election season.
A part of an organization that breaks away from the main body, usually owing to disagreement. For example, Perot's supporters at first constituted a splinter group but soon formed a third political party . This idiom alludes to the noun splinter, a fragment of wood or some other material that is split or broken off. [Mid-1900s]