Ten Words from Today's NY Times - Dec. 5, 2012

Activities for this list:

definitions & notes only words
  1. affluent
    having an abundant supply of money or possessions of value
    With President Obama insisting on higher tax rates for affluent Americans and winning public support for the idea, Congressional Republicans find themselves in an increasingly difficult political spot and are quietly beginning to look for a way out.
  2. portray
    depict in words
    Senior Republican leadership aides say they are contemplating a fallback position since a standoff over expiring tax rates will be portrayed by Democrats as evidence that the opposition is willing to allow taxes to rise on the middle class to keep taxes from rising on the rich — and their intransigence could mean taxes go up on rich, poor and middle class alike.
  3. statutory
    relating to or created by regulations
    The leadership officials now say that if no deal can be struck to avert the automatic expiration of all the Bush-era tax cuts and the onset of deep, across-the-board spending cuts, they could foresee taking up and passing legislation this month to extend the tax cuts for the middle class and then resume the bitter fight over spending and taxes as the nation approaches the next hard deadline: its statutory borrowing limit, which could be reached in late January or February.
  4. restive
    impatient especially under restriction or delay
    It is a dynamic that has haunted Speaker John A. Boehner throughout the 112th Congress, as he has repeatedly been caught between the imperative to govern and the need to satisfy the restive right.
  5. unequivocal
    admitting of no doubt or misunderstanding
    “I think as of late there has been a reluctance to speak out on this issue,” he added, “and that’s why I was really delighted that they chose to take a strong unequivocal stand.”
  6. vitriolic
    harsh, bitter, or malicious in tone
    American Jews have long had a vigorous, and sometimes vitriolic, debate about the positions of the Israeli government and the peace process with the Palestinians.
  7. indicative
    pointing out or revealing clearly
    “I think what we said is indicative of what more and more rabbis believe, and more and more, but in trickles, are able to say it.”
  8. sanctuary
    a consecrated place where sacred objects are kept
    B’nai Jeshurun, which is not affiliated with any of the major branches of Judaism, generally worships in an elaborate Moorish-style sanctuary on West 88th Street; its best-attended services, which draw several thousand people, spill over into a church nearby.
  9. protagonist
    the principal character in a work of fiction
    Books commonly read by elementary school children — those with human characters rather than talking animals or wizards — include the Junie B. Jones, Cam Jansen, Judy Moody, Stink and Big Nate series, all of which feature a white protagonist.
  10. stereotype
    a conventional or formulaic conception or image
    The few that are available tend to focus on stereotypes of migrant workers or on special holidays.

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