American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. One who takes advantage of any opportunity to achieve an end, often with no regard for principles or consequences.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. [capitalized] In French politics, a member of that section of the Republican party which believes in regulating political action in accordance with circumstances, and not by dogmatic principles. This word first came into use in France about 1873. The Opportunists were the party of concession, and occupied an intermediate position between the various groups of monarchists and the Intransigentists, the extreme section of the Republican party. Their leader was Gambetta.
- n. In general, one who takes advantage of opportunities as they occur; one who waits for an opportune time before attempting to bring into practice or to urge upon others the principles or beliefs which he holds; one who makes the best of circumstances as they arise; hence, one who is without settled principles or consistent policy: opposed to extremist.
- Of, pertaining to, or characteristic of the political party known as the Opportunists; hence [lowercase], of or pertaining to opportunism, or the observance of a waiting policy; making the best of circumstances while waiting for a suitable time for the proper carrying out of one's views.
- n. Someone who takes advantage of any opportunity to advance his own situation, placing expediency above principle.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. Recent One who advocates or practices opportunism.
- adj. taking immediate advantage, often unethically, of any circumstance of possible benefit
- n. a person who places expediency above principle
“Charlie Crist, battered by rivals as a political opportunist, is losing ground in his quest to build a bipartisan voter coalition and win a U.S.”
“Has here ever been a more blatant opportunist is U.S. politics?”
“And, if that happens, can he be confident of carrying the army and his rag-tag opportunist supporters with him?”
“Astrospace got his followers transferred to his new Astronautics account, and called the opportunist a "hacker”
“He's an opportunist, which is why he accepted the "tainted" seat, but he's also the junior senator from Illinois.”
“Employees neither trust nor respect the ambassador, and claim he is an 'opportunist' unqualified and unwilling to properly carry out the duties of a representative of 25 million suffering Afghans who face daily bombings, kidnappings, and a decrepit infrastructure.”
“Brown goes on to describe anyone who opposes him as being "opportunist".”
“After all, the "opportunist" description fits the bill for most of the Supers who are appointed officials and not elected ones.”
“But to go after Edwards as being some sort of "opportunist", when he's merely proposing the kind of solution to a problem that every other politician in the universe is proposing for their own pet "problems", is really ridiculous.”
“(Of course, unlike Cheney, Gore the "opportunist" wasn't shopping around a memoir  to publishers while he was conducting a PR campaign.)”
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