take the heat

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take the heat (third-person singular simple present takes the heat, present participle taking the heat, simple past took the heat, past participle taken the heat)

  1. (informal) To take the blame; to be the focus of anger or scrutiny; to take the consequences.
    If this decision turns out to be a bad one, I'll take the heat for it.
    • 2020 September 23, Nigel Harris, “Comment: We MUST seize the moment”, in Rail, page 3:
      For entirely self-serving reasons, ministers and civil servants never dispelled the public belief that uncaring 'fat cat' privateers or foreign state railways were in control, ramping up fares and creaming off profits which either enriched shareholders or subsidised European rail fares. DfT left train operators to 'take the heat' - which they dutifully did, fearful of speaking up and 'biting the hand that feeds'.

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