soft-pedal :

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  • v  play down or obscure
    His advisers soft-pedaled the president's blunder

  • Their militant chatter reached such a pitch last week that War Minister General Senjuro Hayashi was moved to step in and soft-pedal it.
  • But the newest version of candidate McCain does not dillydally, soft-pedal or claim to live outside politics-as-usual.
  • THE PRESIDENCY Unlike Franklin Roosevelt, who liked to needle Republicans with provocative statements during their conventions, Harry Truman soft-pedaled politics last.
News & Articles


  • Eugenie Scott in Capital Times
    You don't have to go far to find a teacher afraid of teaching evolution or who is teaching creationism,she said in an interview. "Teachers will often soft-pedal evolution or skip over it if there is a chance of a confrontation."
  • Coen brothers in Los Angeles Times
    That said, it's pretty faithful to the novel because it worked. Part of the reason we were attracted to doing it as a movie is we thought, 'A lot of it is there.' We [didn't] want to soft-pedal what's in the novel in terms of the violence,...
  • Darrell Issa in North County Times
    We can soft-pedal it a lot of ways, but Congress was lied to,Issa, R-Vista, said in a Wednesday phone interview from his Washington office.

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