veto meaning

[ 'vi:təu ] Pronunciation:   "veto" in a sentence
Noun: veto (vetoes)  veetow
  1. A vote that blocks a decision 
  2. The power or right to prohibit or reject a proposed or intended act (especially the power of a chief executive to reject a bill passed by the legislature)
Verb: veto  veetow
  1. Vote against; refuse to endorse; refuse to assent
    "The President vetoed the bill"
    - blackball, negative 
  2. Command against
    "Mother vetoed the trip to the chocolate store"
    - forbid, prohibit, interdict, proscribe, disallow, nix [N. Amer]

Derived forms: vetoes, vetoed, vetoing

Type of: ballot, balloting, command, contradict, controvert, oppose, power, powerfulness, require, vote, voting

Encyclopedia: Veto Veto, The Royal

AmE / noun, verb

noun (plural vetoes)

1 [C,U]

the right to refuse to allow sth to be done, especially the right to stop a law from being passed or a decision from being taken:

The executive committee has a final veto on/over business decisions.

The British government used its veto to block the proposal.

to have the power/right of veto

veto power/rights

The management board has the right of veto over major transfers of shareholdings.

2 [C]

an occasion when sb refuses to allow sth to be done:

For months there was a veto on employing new staff.

verb [+ obj] (vetoes, vetoing, vetoed, vetoed)


to stop sth from happening or being done by using your official authority (= by using your veto):

The takeover was vetoed by the European Commission.


to refuse to accept or do what sb has suggested:

The union vetoed the introduction of six-month contracts.

n. 1. (in international law) The power given to any permanent member of the Security Council of the United Nations to refuse to agree to any nonprocedural proposal (there is no such power in relation to procedural matters) and thereby defeat it. An abstention is not equivalent to a veto. The President of the Security Council has power to determine which questions are nonprocedural. The General Assembly of the UN passed a Uniting for Peace Resolution in 1950,providing for the Assembly to take over some of the functions of the Security Council when the Council's work has been paralysed by use of the veto. This resolution, however, was only a political gesture and failed to overcome the veto power.
2. (in EU law) a. The power of a member state in the Council of the European Union to block legislation when a unanimous decision in favour of a measure is required. Although much EU legislation only requires a qualified majority decision of the Council, unanimity votes are required in such areas as taxation, budgets, foreign policy, and the admission of new member states. b. The power of the European Parliament to reject legislation proposed by the Commission by means of the codecision procedure.


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  1. i positively put a veto upon your doing so.
  2. the lords exercised their veto.
  3. an abstention is not regarded as a veto.
  4. father put a veto upon our staying out late.
  5. the governor's veto kept the bill from becoming a law.

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PC Version