Definition of smoke-filled rooms in English:

smoke-filled rooms


  • Used in reference to political decision-making conducted privately by a small group of influential people rather than more openly or democratically.

    ‘he understands the party machine, the smoke-filled rooms, and the endless resolutions’
    • ‘After the Civil War, said Bonpane, ‘Hayes agreed in a smoke-filled room to take the Yankee troops out of the South.’’
    • ‘We got into this mess because we needed to create political leadership opportunities and replace the smoke-filled room with the open-source, collaborative politics that is our future.’
    • ‘On the one hand, the photograph gives us a hint of what it feels like to be a power broker whose milieu is the smoke-filled room, or an insider who manages the campaign from the sidelines.’
    • ‘We know that the nation's wealth is all made indoors, that power has passed from the Whigs of the land to the Tories and socialists of the smoke-filled room.’
    • ‘A smoke-filled room at Marshall Space Flight Center, with representatives of every specialty at Marshall present.’
    • ‘They were expected to come to his house, stay into the morning hours in a closed, smoke-filled room and help him with his research programs and proposals.’
    • ‘The voters don't really participate in the primaries, and I think Sandy's got a point: not necessarily a smoke-filled room, but bring back party leadership.’