Definition of Political Capital

What does the term "political capital" mean? What is the definition of the term "political capital"?

"Political capital" refers to the idea that a politician or political policy can build up a certain amount of "goodwill" with the public through the pursuit of popular policies. This "goodwill" can then be used to pass unpopular bills without greatly damaging the support of the politician or party who is trying to pass it.

Definition of Political Capital - Financial DictionaryExample

John Smith is elected President of the United States. One of his first acts as President is to sign a sweeping tax cut bill that will cut taxes for each and every person in the country.

By passing this bill, Smith and his party have gained a tremendous amount of "goodwill". This goodwill and "political capital" will be used later in the year when Smith and his party try to pass a controversial health care reform bill.

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