Teflon is a no-stick cooking surface. People have been called “Teflon” when things (such as criminal charges) don’t stick to them.
Italian-American gangster John Gotti (1940-2002) was called the “Teflon Don” in 1990 when he was victorious in court against the government charges. New York City’s “Teflon Don” (as the tabloids called him) won three trials until he he was finally found guilty.
New York City real estate developer, television personality and politician Donald Trump was called a “Teflon Don” in Forbes magazine in 2012.
Wikipedia: John Gotti
John Joseph Gotti Jr. (October 27, 1940 – June 10, 2002) was an Italian-American gangster who became boss of the Gambino crime family in New York City. Gotti and his brothers grew up in poverty and turned to a life of crime at an early age. Gotti quickly rose to prominence, becoming one of the crime family’s biggest earners and a protégé of Gambino family underboss Aniello Dellacroce, operating out of the Ozone Park neighborhood of Queens.
Gotti was one of the most powerful and dangerous crime bosses in America. During his era he became widely known for his outspoken personality and flamboyant style, which gained him favor with much of the general public. His peers avoided attracting attention, especially from the media, but Gotti became known as “The Dapper Don” for his expensive clothes and personality in front of news cameras. He was later given the nickname “The Teflon Don” after three high-profile trials in the 1980s resulted in his acquittal, though it was later revealed that the trials had been tainted by jury tampering, juror misconduct, and witness intimidation. Law enforcement authorities continued gathering evidence against Gotti that helped lead to his downfall.
Wikipedia: Teflon (nickname)
Teflon is a nickname given to persons, particularly in politics, to whom criticism does not seem to stick. The term comes from Teflon, the brand name by DuPont of a “non-stick” chemical used on cookware.
. Ronald Reagan, the President of the United States, was called by his detractors “the Teflon president”. The nickname was coined by Patricia Schroeder, a Congresswoman, and reflected on how a plethora of scandals surrounding his presidency seemed to have no effect on his individual popularity with the public.
. Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton due to their ability to survive various controversies, including an impeachment procedure.
. “Teflon Don” was applied to mafia boss John Gotti, who managed to escape being charged or convicted of crimes for over a decade, despite being the very public leader of a New York crime family.
. Donald Trump, republican candidate, referenced by news commentators as the new “Teflon Don” for his consistent resiliency to frequent criticism for unorthodox faux pas events during his presidential run. Many fans do not disagree with his pronouncements or possible hyperbole despite critics.
28 May 1985, Washington (DC) Post, “Why the Blame Isn’t Sticking to Mayor Goode” by Milton Coleman, pg. C1, col. 4:
PHILADELPHIA MAYOR W. Wilson Goode is demonstrating that Teflon comes in all colors.
(Pg. C4, col. 5)
Politicians with Teflon don’t have to be the best thing in the world, just way ahead of whomever’s in second place.
9 February 1990, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “Gotti Acquitted in Union Shooting: Mob Figure Beats 3rd Attempt by U.S. to Put Him in Jail” (United Press International), pg. 1, col. 2:
NEW YORK—A jury today acquitted reputed Mafia boss John Gotti of all charges in the shooting of a union leader, marking yet another victory for Gotti over the government and polishing his reputation for invincibility as the “Teflon Don.”
13 December 1990, Orange County Register (Santa Ana, CA), Charges will stick against reputed Mafia boss, officials say FBI reports it has a witness who saw Gotti near scene of crime,” pg. A34:
Gotti has been indicted three times in recent years on state and federal charges and beat the rap each time, earning the nickname “The Teflon Don.”
His lawyer, Bruce Cutler, denounced the indictment as a vendetta by publicity-hungry authorities, and denied Gotti is involved in organized crime.
OCLC WorldCat record
Trial by jury
Publisher: Morgan Creek Productions, 1994.
Series: Documenti (Archivio nazionale cinematografico della Resistenza (Italy))., Video ;, 2664.
Edition/Format: VHS video : VHS tape Visual material : English
He’s guilty of murder. The feds have him dead to rights. At last there’s no escape for this mob boss, a “Teflon Don” who has slipped free of murder raps so many times before. But something goes wrong in the jury room. Eleven jurors vote guilty.
Rick Ross Wants to Do Business with Donald Trump: Rap-Up.com
The Teflon Don, who own his own Miami property, has p… http://bit.ly/aSWJMb
1:14 PM - 8 Jun 2010
NOV 13, 2012 @ 05:59 PM
Teflon Don: Why Macy’s, NBC (And America) Won’t Dump Trump
Clare O’Connor , FORBES STAFF
Is there anything Donald Trump could do that would see him permanently blacklisted by the American public? That isn’t a rhetorical question. I’m genuinely curious.
Trump is no longer Teflon Don. My story on voters around the country who have abandoned him in the last month:
7:14 PM - 22 Aug 2016