Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Mon Sep 29 15:12:11 UTC 2008

In New Jersey, Gov. Corzine is proposing "anti-wheeling" legislation:


"Wheeling" defined here (with a bonus usage as a transitive verb):

State Sen. Richard Codey (D-Essex) said he strongly agrees with the
provision in Gov. Jon Corzine's executive order that would ban the
practice of wheeling, but he wants to look at the fine print in
basically every other aspect of the ethics package.
"I would go further; I would make the anti-wheeling measure stronger,"
said Codey, who said he did not attend today's press conference with
the governor because of a scheduling conflict.
Not only does Codey support a ban on wheeling across county lines -
but across state lines.
"I would say 'you can't wheel money in, and you can't wheel out," the
former governor said of that practice by outside political action
committees (PACs) of transferring monies to local political
organizations to be distributed to local campaigns.

Earliest I've found so far is from 2004:

2004 _New York Times_ 24 Mar. 7 (Factiva) Many people urge
restrictions on the transfer of funds from one county to another, a
practice known as "wheeling," which enables influential party leaders
to manipulate elections outside their districts.
2004 _Star-Ledger_ (Newark, NJ) 4 Apr. 1 (Factiva) A 1993 law allows
county political committees to collect much larger donations than any
candidate can and to shift unlimited funds from one county to another
in a practice known as "wheeling."
2004 _The Record_ (Bergen, NJ) 25 May A1 (Factiva) "Probably the most
difficult issues surround the multifarious indirect paths through
which economic actors purchase political good will," he wrote. "Among
high-end sophisticates in the political marketplace, it may take the
form of funneling contributions to a low-visibility political
committee which then makes independent expenditures or transfers to
another committee, known as 'wheeling.'"

--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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