Logrolling is a colorful phrase that refers to trading favors, a synonym to "quid pro quo", for instance to describe vote trading by legislative members to obtain passage of actions of interest to each legislative member. The term is also used for similar activities in academics, notably the "cross quoting" of papers in order to drive up reference counts. The "Nuttall Encyclopedia" describes as "mutual praise by authors of each other's work." Famed frontiersman Davy Crockett was one of the first to apply the term to legislation:

The first known use of the term was by Congressman Davy Crockett, who said on the floor (of the U.S. House of Representatives) in 1835, "my people don't like me to log-roll in their business, and vote away pre-emption rights to fellows in other states that never kindle a fire on their own land." [http://www.answers.com/topic/logrolling logrolling: Definition and Much More from Answers.com ] ]

The widest accepted origin is the old custom of neighbors assisting each other with the moving of logs. If two neighbors had cut a lot of timber which needed to be moved, it made more sense for them to work together to roll the logs. [ [http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=log Online Etymology Dictionary ] ] [ [http://www.bartleby.com/61/29/L0232900.html logrolling. The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000 ] ] In this way, it is similar to a barn-raising where a neighbor comes and helps build your barn and then you go and help build his. Here is an example of the term's original use

"A family comes to sit down in the forest," wrote an observer in 1835. "Their neighbors lay down their employments, shoulder their axes, and come in to the log-rolling. They spend the day in hard labor, and then retire, leaving the newcomers their good wishes, and an habitation

Though most sources support the above etymology, another possible origin is from the sport by the same name in which two contestants try to topple each other into the water by standing on a log. Each must keep up with the other or risk taking a spill, so it appears to be cooperative. Fact|date=November 2007

"Spy Magazine" ran a feature entitled "Logrolling in Our Time" that cited suspicious or humorous examples of mutually admiring book jacket blurbs by pairs of authors. "Private Eye" magazine regularly draws attention to alleged logrolling by authors in "books of the year" features published by British newspapers and magazines. ["Private Eye", 21 December 2007.]

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • logrolling — log·roll·ing / lȯg ˌrō liŋ, läg / n [from the former American custom of neighbors assisting one another in rolling logs into a pile for burning]: the practice of including in a legislative bill unrelated provisions to attract a wider base of… …   Law dictionary

  • Logrolling — Log roll ing, n. 1. (Logging) The act or process of rolling logs from the place where they were felled to the stream which floats them to the sawmill or to market. In this labor neighboring camps of loggers combine to assist each other in turn.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • logrolling — also log rolling, in the legislative vote trading sense, 1823, Amer.Eng., from the notion of neighbors on the frontier helping one another with the heavy work of clearing land and building cabins (as in phrase you roll my log and I ll roll… …   Etymology dictionary

  • logrolling — ☆ logrolling [lôg′rōl΄iŋ ] n. 1. the act of rolling logs, as when a group of neighbors help to clear off land by rolling logs into some spot for burning, etc. 2. a) a giving of help, praise, etc. in return for help, praise, etc. b) Politics… …   English World dictionary

  • logrolling — /ˈlɒgroʊlɪŋ/ (say logrohling) noun Chiefly US 1. burling. See burl2 (def. 4). 2. the exchange of support between two politicians, as by voting for each other s bills, for mutual benefit: *My absence serves me better than any number of petitions… …   Australian English dictionary

  • logrolling — balsavimo susitarimas statusas T sritis Politika apibrėžtis Atstovaujamosios institucijos narių tarpusavio susitarimas balsavimo metu elgtis ir balsuoti taip, kad būtų paremtas ir priimtas abiem pusėms naudingas galutinis sprendimas. atitikmenys …   Politikos mokslų enciklopedinis žodynas

  • logrolling — noun Date: 1812 1. [from a former American custom of neighbors assisting one another in rolling logs into a pile for burning] the exchanging of assistance or favors; specifically the trading of votes by legislators to secure favorable action on… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • logrolling — /lawg roh ling, log /, n. 1. U.S. Politics. the exchange of support or favors, esp. by legislators for mutual political gain as by voting for each other s bills. 2. cronyism or mutual favoritism among writers, editors, or critics, as in the form… …   Universalium

  • logrolling — noun a) The rolling of logs. b) A concerted effort to push forward mutually advantageous legislative agendas …   Wiktionary

  • logrolling — Synonyms and related words: backscratching, barter, cloture, committee consideration, debate, deliberation, division, even trade, filibuster, filibustering, filing, first reading, influence peddling, introduction, lobbying, lobbyism, political… …   Moby Thesaurus

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