Corruption is where a government official acts in their own interests, often over the interests of their position or country.
Various definitions for political corruption
Political corruption (accessed April 23, 2021)
Political corruption ... is the use of powers by government officials or their network contacts for illegitimate private gain.
Forms of corruption vary, but can include bribery, lobbying, extortion, cronyism, nepotism, parochialism, patronage, influence peddling, graft, and embezzlement. Corruption may facilitate criminal enterprise such as drug trafficking, money laundering, and human trafficking, though it is not restricted to these activities. Misuse of government power for other purposes, such as repression of political opponents and general police brutality, is also considered political corruption.
Political Corruption (accessed April 23, 2021)
Political corruption, otherwise known as government corruption, has been defined in numerous ways. Aristotle, the third-century Greek philosopher, defined it as the practice of leaders who rule with a view to their private advantage rather than the pursuit of the public interest. More recently, it has also been defined as behavior by government officials that violates publicly sanctioned moral standards. In the early twenty-first century the definition most commonly used among social scientists is that devised by Joseph S. Nye—the abuse of public office for personal enrichment. Such abuse occurs in many forms. The most common include bribery, extortion, embezzlement of government resources, violation of campaign laws, and electoral fraud.
Political Corruption Law and Legal Definition (accessed April 23, 2021), primarily US
Political corruption means the abuse of political power by the government leaders to extract and accumulate for private enrichment, and to use politically corrupt means to maintain their hold on power. However, abuse of political power for other purposes, such as repression of political opponents and general police brutality, is not considered political corruption. Political corruption takes place at the highest levels of the political system, and hence it can be differentiated from administrative or bureaucratic corruption.
Political Corruption: An Introduction to the Issues (accessed April 23, 2021), international
Political corruption is the manipulation of the political institutions and the rules of procedure, and therefore it influences the institutions of government and the political system, and it frequently leads to institutional decay. Political corruption is therefore something more than a deviation from formal and written legal norms, from professional codes of ethics and court rulings. Political corruption is when laws and regulations are more or less systematically abused by the rulers, side-stepped, ignored, or even tailored to fit their interests. Political corruption is a deviation from the rational-legal values and principles of the modern state, and the basic problem is the weak accountability between the governors and the governed. In particular in authoritarian countries, the legal bases, against which corrupt practices are usually evaluated and judged, are weak and furthermore subject to downright encroachment by the rulers.