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a room located in the rear, especially one used only by certain people.
a place where powerful or influential persons, especially politicians, meet to plan secretly or from which they exercise control in an indirect manner:
The candidate for mayor was chosen in the precincts’ back rooms.
Contemporary Examples

I want Missourians to make a choice in this election based on policy, not backroom politics.
Abortion Opponents and Many Democrats Want Todd Akin to Stay in Senate Race Patricia Murphy August 20, 2012

The tightly controlled choreography stirred the emotions while celebrating the unsung heroes of the backroom.
Galliano Erased at Christian Dior Robin Givhan March 6, 2011

It was reminiscent of the old days of backroom politics and half-drunk reporters swaying against their typewriters.
The Bizarro World Of Iowa’s GOP Convention Ben Jacobs June 22, 2014

In our political system, presidents are not empowered to promise to launch wars in backroom negotiations with foreign leaders.
Obama Needs U.S. Debate Before Making Pledges to Israel About Attacking Iran Peter Beinart August 19, 2012

I thought it would be hidden, out in the woods, or some kind of backroom deal.
The True Story Behind Dallas Buyers Club: Meet the Real Ron Woodruff Andrew Romano November 2, 2013

Historical Examples

He had also meant to do general repair work in the backroom shop.
The Planet Strappers Raymond Zinke Gallun

On arriving at the huckster’s, he found him in the backroom, or parlor, to which we have before alluded.
The Black Baronet; or, The Chronicles Of Ballytrain William Carleton

He pulled the sheet up over Emma’s body, leaving it on the backroom couch to which they had carried it.
No Strings Attached Lester del Rey

On his way back, he noticed there were two others in the backroom, a couple of men gnawing on pretzels over beers.
Hooded Detective, Volume III No. 2, January, 1942 Various

Just then there came a low, long groan from the backroom, and at the same time some one came into the parlor.
Romance of California Life

John Habberton


a place where research or planning is done, esp secret research in wartime
(as modifier): back-room boys


Having to do with political expediency; from the inner circles of party affairs: a backroom decision/ backroom motives

Related Terms

the boys in the backroom

[1940s+;fr see what the boys in the back room will have, suggesting a secret conclave in the rear of a saloon]


Read Also:

  • Backs

    the rear part of the human body, extending from the neck to the lower end of the spine. the part of the body of animals corresponding to the human back. the rear portion of any part of the body: the back of the head. the whole body, with reference to clothing: the clothes on his […]

  • Backscratch

    backscratch noun A helping or accommodating of one by another: It’s got to be a mutual backscratch (late 1800s+) Related Terms you scratch my back i scratch yours

  • Backscratcher

    a long-handled device for scratching one’s own back. a person who exchanges favors or services for mutual advantage. noun an implement with a long handle, used for scratching one’s back (informal) a person who provides a service, corporate or public money etc, for another, in order to receive a similar service or reward in return

  • Backscratching

    backscratching noun A helping or accommodating of one by another: It’s got to be a mutual backscratch (late 1800s+) Related Terms you scratch my back i scratch yours

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