To seek for, expose, or charge, esp. habitually, corruption, real or alleged, on the part of public men and corporations. On April 14, 1906, President Roosevelt delivered a speech on "The Man with the Muck Rake," in which he deprecated sweeping and unjust charges of corruption against public men and corporations. The phrase was taken up by the press, and the verb to
- To search for and expose misconduct in public life.