President Trump just vetoed the NDAA defense bill just as he said he would, forcing Congress to come back and override his veto:
THE HILL – President Trump followed through Wednesday on his threat to veto a massive annual defense policy bill, setting up what could be the first and only veto override of his presidency.
Congress passed the fiscal year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) earlier this month with more than the two-thirds majority needed to override a veto, though it is unclear how many Republicans will buck the president in an override vote.
Trump objected to the $740 billion policy legislation because it did not include a provision repealing Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, a law that provides a legal shield to tech companies like Twitter and Facebook.
Trump also threatened to veto the legislation because it included a provision requiring Confederate military bases to be renamed within three years and has recently complained that he views the bill as weak on China, despite a litany of provisions aimed specifically at Beijing.
Trump, who had 10 days excluding Sundays to act after Congress sent him the bill, waited until the last day he could to veto it.
Both the Senate and House will now need to vote to override Trump’s veto to enact the massive bill, which outlines Pentagon policy for the coming year and typically attracts broad bipartisan support. The bill already passed the Senate in an 84-13 vote and the House in a 355-78 vote.
Below is the full text of Trump’s veto:
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) December 23, 2020
McConnell has already made a deal with Schumer to come back on the 29th to attempt an override of Trump’s veto:
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced early Tuesday morning that the Senate will return to Washington on Dec. 29 to respond to a potential veto from President Trump of a mammoth defense bill.
McConnell, speaking from the Senate floor, said that he had struck a deal with Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) for the chamber to return for a rare post-Christmas session during which he said they will “process” a veto override, if it’s passed by the House.
“My intention was and is to ensure the Senate continues fulfilling our obligation to the men and women of our armed forces. I hope the president will not veto this bill,” McConnell said from the Senate floor.
“In the event that President Trump does elect to veto this bipartisan bill, it appears the House may choose to return after the holidays to set up a vote to consider the veto. … In the event that the president has vetoed the bill, and the House has voted to override the veto, the Senate would have the opportunity to process a veto override at that time,” McConnell added.
Even if the Senate returns on Dec. 29, it could still be days before a final vote takes place on whether to override a potential veto from Trump of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
It won’t be that many days because this year’s session ends in the first week of January. Also since the bill passed with overwhelming majorities, they will likely be able to override the veto. The question is will all Republicans, who joined Democrats to pass the bill, be willing to put their proverbial neck on the line and oppose Trump on this one.