One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A committee, usually invested with a number of administrative powers, intended to represent the members of a particular body, organization, or interest group nationwide, or to represent the interests of a nation in an international context.
2US Politics. The executive committee of a political party, selected by the national convention, and with powers to nominate candidates for office, oversee the planning of campaigns, etc.
Early 19th century. From national + committee.
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