1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Buncombe

BUNCOMBE, or Bunkum (from Buncombe county, North Carolina, United States), a term used for insincere political action or speaking to gain support or the favour of a constituency, and so any humbug or clap-trap. The phrase “to talk for (or to) Buncombe” arose in 1820, during the debate on the Missouri Compromise in Congress; the member for the district containing Buncombe county confessed that his long and much interrupted speech was only made because his electors expected it, and that he was “speaking for Buncombe.”