the crux of the matter

the crux of the matter

The most important, central, or fundamental essence or elements of an issue, problem, or matter at hand. Thank you all for attending this staff meeting. Before we get to the crux of the matter, I'd like to assure each of you that your jobs are secure. Here's the crux of the matter, Bill. We feel like your performance has really been slipping recently.
See also: crux, matter, of
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*the crux of the matter

 and *the root of the matter;
See also: crux, matter, of
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

crux of the matter

Also, heart of the matter. The basic, central or critical point of an issue. For example, In this trial the bloodstains represent the crux of the matter, or We think the second clause is the heart of the matter. Although crux is Latin for "cross," in English it means "difficulty" or "puzzle," and it is from the latter that this expression is thought to be derived. The variant employs heart in the sense of "a vital part" (as it is in the body). The first term dates from the late 1800s, the variant from the early 1500s.
See also: crux, matter, of
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

crux of the matter, the

The essential, pivotal point of an issue. The word “crux” came into English from Latin unchanged except in meaning; in Latin crux means “cross,” specifically the kind used in crucifixions and other executions. The English word “crux,” on the other hand, also signifies a difficulty or puzzle. This meaning, some writers believe, stems from the crossing of the two lines that make up a cross, which is also called a knot or node, whence the transfer to a “knotty problem.” Songwriter John Lennon, of Beatles fame, punned on the cliché in The Fingeltoad Resort: “That seems to be the crutch of the matter.”
See also: crux, of
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
See also:
References in classic literature ?
Yes, that was the crux of the matter. She wanted to retain her good opinion of herself.
The report at the crux of the matter looked into the establishment of the 'rogue unit' which took place during Gordhan's tenure as commissioner at SARS in 2007.
At the moment there's lots of stats and facts and figures going round but the crux of the matter is that we're the drug death capital of Europe and something has to be done to stop it.
The crux of the matter is that valuation of the houses by the Ministry of Housing, which was supposed to set the rent amounts payable to the state, is yet to happen.
'However, the crux of the matter is that we have agreed to allocate a large budget for each [child] detainee and place them in the care of the Women's Ministry as they have experts on childcare,' he said.
@montie This is the crux of the matter. We don't yet know which of these things is more compelling: 1.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang missed the point because the crux of the matter is the crew of the Chinese vessel left the Filipino fishermen in peril of the sea, Gordon said.
The crux of the matter is you (China) left the fishermen in peril of the sea.'
However, the crux of the matter is how to get rid of huge recurring financial losses being caused by our loss-making SOEs.
The crux of the matter is that our country needs to adopt a holistic approach to meeting ends of justice.
'The crux of the matter is that the Prosecutor General Accountability is the Principal Law Officer of the NAB who must have the eligibility to appear before the courts established under National Accountability Ordinance and all other courts, meaning thereby that the Prosecutor General Accountability should have not any type of embargo or restriction on his appearance as an advocate before any court,' added the petitioner.
'This is because in our view the crux of the matter as the things currently stand revolves around whether the petitioner's (Rajput's) resignation letter was fabricated or not which is a factual inquiry, ' he added.
"The crux of the matter for any economy is the mismatch of skills.
He said the crux of the matter is the CTO issuing a licence.
"In some cases, the children may need to be in a residential setting but that's expensive and the crux of the matter is money."