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Snippy is an adjective meaning "sharp or curt" and "sharp-tongued; impertinent".[1]

Examples of use[edit]

2000 U.S. presidential election[edit]

The word grew to prominence in the United States after its well-publicized use in a phone call between Al Gore and George W. Bush during the 2000 U.S. presidential election. At about 1:30 am Central Time Zone the day after the election, major television networks that had previously reported a victory for Gore in Florida "conclusively called" the state for Bush and reported that Bush had been elected president. The Vice President then called Bush at the Governor's mansion in Texas to concede. While driving to the War Memorial plaza in Nashville in which Gore planned to make his final remarks, he and his staff learned that Bush led Florida "by only 5,000 votes, with precincts still to count." [2] Only "minutes before the vice president was about to admit defeat officially", Gore called the Governor again.[3]

The Guardian reported that:

'Circumstances,' he said, once through to the Governor of Texas, 'have changed. I need to withdraw my concession until the situation is clear'. 'Let me make sure I understand, Mr Vice-President,' said Bush. 'You're calling me back to retract your concession'. 'There's no need to get snippy about it,' said Gore. Bush replied that his brother Jeb was the Governor in charge of the Florida ballot. Gore's voice retorted: 'It may surprise you but your younger brother is not the ultimate authority on this.' 'Mr Vice-President,' said Bush's voice, 'You need to do what you have to do.'[2]

BBC News stated that "Those who heard the conversation say that Governor Bush did not seem happy to receive the vice president's call."[3] The conversation, particularly the phrase "There's no need to get snippy", was heavily satirized by the United States media, notably by Saturday Night Live.[4]

Henry Rollins mentions this situation on his stand up comedy album Talk Is Cheap Vol I, even humorously titling the track "Getting Snippy With It".

See also[edit]

  • Snob
  • Attitude


  1. "Dictionary.com's definition of snippy".
  2. 2.0 2.1 Ed Helmore (12 November 2000). "The Longest Night". The Observer. Retrieved 2007-08-18.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "What Gore said to Bush". BBC News. 9 November 2000. Retrieved 2007-08-18.
  4. Dennis McNicholas. "The Presidential Couple". Retrieved 2007-08-18.

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