The phrase thrown "under the bus" has emerged lately as a popular catchphrase, with even the Wall Street Journal's Ben Zimmer examining it, but what does its media popularity look like?
Worldwide online media coverage January 2017 to present exhibits a slight increase in mid-September – noticeable but hardly a vertical surge.
Television news shows little major change over the past decade, though there has been a pronounced increase in the past month and a half on CNN and MSNBC, with no movement on Fox News, illustrating the politicization of the term of late.
Building on Zimmer's analysis, the timeline below compares mentions January 2017 to present in worldwide online media of "under the bus" against "scapegoat" and "sacrificial lamb." The most common phrase is clearly "scapegoat" followed by "under the bus" with "sacrificial lamb" a distant last.
In contrast, on television, "under the bus" is the most common, followed by scapegoat and then "sacrificial lamb."