political football

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political football

A problem or situation that causes an argument between different political parties, often in an attempt to gain an advantage. It didn't take too long before the issue of property taxes turned into a political football for the candidates.
See also: football, political

political football

Fig. an issue that becomes politically divisive; a problem that doesn't get solved because the politics of the issue get in the way. The question of campaign contributions has become a political football. All the politicians who accept questionable money are pointing fingers at each other.
See also: football, political

a poˌlitical ˈfootball

an issue or a problem that causes argument and disagreement and that different political groups use to gain votes: It is sad that education is still being used as a political football, instead of action being taken to improve it.
See also: football, political
References in periodicals archive ?
When they latch onto something it becomes the political football of the day.
They won't understand the political football bit because they consider that the language is their political property.
The political football played at the Coliseum over the years has been as rough and tumble as the kind on the gridiron.
That's why he smoothly handed off the political football to the Archbishop of Canterbury.
It was Clinton who put the political football into play Tuesday during a Rose Garden ceremony honoring teachers.