This sentence in a CNN.com report sent me to the dictionary:
Chelsea Clinton will spend three days there to strum up last-minute votes before the state’s Tuesday caucuses, said a source from her mother’s campaign.
Did I miss something? Can someone “strum up,” instead of “drum up,” support? The dictionaries I checked don’t give that meaning for “strum.” I guess the writer was reaching for a more melodic metaphor.
Read this definition of “drum” from the OED: ‘To go about, as a drummer does, to gather recruits, to secure partisans, customers, etc.; with for’ (Webster 1864). The Webster’s New World College Dictionary defines “drum up” as “to get business by soliciting.”
As light as Miss Clinton’s touch must be, I do think she will “drum up,” not “strum up,” votes.
This article was originally posted by the Raleigh News & Observer, a subsidiary of The McClatchy Co.; is posted here to provide continuity; and is copyright © 2011 The News & Observer Publishing Company, which reserves the right to remove this post.