LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Online searches for the word “recuse” spiked Thursday as Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced he would do just that in reference to a federal investigation into Russian interference in the election.

In the hours leading up to and following Session’s announcement , searches for the meaning of “recuse” jumped 45,000 percent, according to Merriam-Webster.

In case you were wondering, the word – which means “to disqualify (oneself) as judge in a particular case” – is derived from a Latin word meaning “to object to” or “to refuse”.


And if you’ve mistakenly pronounced the word as “excuse”, you’re not entirely wrong: both “recuse” and “excuse” come from the same Latin root, which is the ancestor of the English word “cause”.