lame duck

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American term for a person, legislature, or administration that continues to hold office after losing an election.

The practice in the United States of holding presidential elections in November, with the winner taking office only in January (originally in March), means there are often lame duck presidents. Without a mandate the power to make decisions is undermined, and it becomes easier for opponents of measures to utilize delaying tactics, knowing that the President will soon be out of office.

Subjects: Politics.

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