Texas’ Ted Cruz, John Cornyn split in Senate vote to overturn Trump’s veto of the $740+ billion annual defense bill
Credit: Lenin Nolly/Sipa USA via ReutersIn a rare New Year's Day vote, the U.S. Senate voted to overturn a President Donald Trump veto in the twilight days of his presidency. The vote represents the first Congressional veto override of the Trump administration. At issue was the National Defense Authorization Act, an annual budget and spending bill that addresses all sectors of the Americans armed forces. The Texans in the Senate were split: U.S. Sen. John Cornyn voted to override the veto, while U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz chose to sustain it. The U.S. House delivered the more than two-thirds of the chambers' votes necessary to override the Trump veto.
Trump lashes out at GOP after override vote on defense bill
Trump slammed GOP lawmakers on Twitter, charging that “Weak and tired Republican ‘leadership’ will allow the bad Defense Bill to pass.″Trump called the override vote a “disgraceful act of cowardice and total submission by weak people to Big Tech. !″The 322-87 vote in the House sends the override effort to the Senate, where the exact timing of a vote is uncertain. The House veto override was supported by 212 Democrats, 109 Republicans and an independent. Reed called the Dec. 23 veto “Trump’s parting gift to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin and a lump of coal for our troops. The defense bill guides Pentagon policy and cements decisions about troop levels, new weapons systems and military readiness, personnel policy and other military goals.
House overrides Trump's veto of $740 billion defense funding bill
The House of Representatives on Monday overrode President Trump's veto of an annual must-pass defense policy bill, teeing up what could be the first time Congress overrides a veto from Mr. Trump only weeks before he leaves office. The bill, the National Defense Authorization Act, passed both the House and Senate earlier this month with support from more than two-thirds of each chamber, clearing the thresholds needed to set aside Mr. Trump's veto. The $740 billion defense bill provides funding for military programs and construction projects, and authorizes a 3% pay raise for troops. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle urged Mr. Trump to sign the sweeping defense bill, which has become law for 59 years straight. It remains unclear how many Republicans in the House will break with Mr. Trump and vote to overcome his veto.cbsnews.com
House approves defense policy bill with a veto-proof margin
The measure guides Pentagon policy and cements decisions about troop levels, new weapons systems and military readiness, military personnel policy and other military goals. It follows Trump's bid to sabotage the package with an earlier veto threat over Confederate base names. If he does veto the defense bill, Congress could cut short its Christmas recess to hold override votes, senior House members said. And I think he will get substantial pressure, advice (from Republicans) that, you know, you don’t want to put the defense bill at risk.'' The defense bill is typically a widely bipartisan measure, one of the few areas of common ground.
Defense spending bill named after Texas congressman passes U.S. House despite Trump’s veto threat
The National Defense Authorization Act is a massive annual bill that addresses spending within the armed forces and rarely encounters obstacles en route to passage. But this year, President Donald Trump threatened to veto the NDAA the day of the vote. "I hope House Republicans will vote against the very weak National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which I will VETO," Trump tweeted Tuesday morning. The bill's sponsor was Thornberry's Democratic counterpart, House Armed Services Chairman Adam Smith of Washington, who named the legislation the William M. (Mac) Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act. The bill was the product of a House and Senate conference, and the Senate chamber is expected to quickly vote on the bill.
House approves defense bill with veto-proof margin
It follows Trump's bid to sabotage the package with an earlier veto threat over Confederate base names. If he does veto the defense bill, Congress could cut short its Christmas recess to hold override votes, senior House members said. And I think he will get substantial pressure, advice (from Republicans) that, you know, you don’t want to put the defense bill at risk.'' The defense bill is typically a widely bipartisan measure, one of the few areas of common ground. Some Democrats, including Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, agree the Section 230 provision could be revisited, even as they disagree with Trump’s tactic of attaching it to the defense bill.
Congress swats back Trump's veto threat of defense bill
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany speaks during a briefing at the White House, Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020, in Washington. But interjecting the complicated tech issue threatens to upend the massive defense bill, which Congress takes pride in having passed unfailingly for half a century. White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at briefing Wednesday that the president is serious about vetoing the defense bill unless Congress repeals Section 230. Some Democrats, including Schumer, agree the Section 230 provision could be revisited, even as they disagree with Trump’s tactic of attaching it to the defense bill. But he also said he doesn’t believe Trump will veto the must-pass defense bill.
Defense bill in danger over Confederate-named military bases
Republicans are vowing they will not send the broader bill to Trump if it includes language requiring bases named after Confederate officers to be renamed. “It's Senate language that we want to agree to," said House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith, D-Wash. “So there shouldn't be controversy here." “Look, the defense bill is really important," Smith said, expressing hope that Republicans would relent. Both the House and Senate defense measures passed by veto-proof margins but GOP leaders want to avoid the chances of a veto coming to pass. The Associated Press erroneously reported that failure to pass the legislation could hold up a pay raise for the military.
House Latest: GOP’s Hinson ousts US Rep. Finkenauer in Iowa
Republican state Sen. Stephanie Bice earned a reputation as a political moderate in her two terms in the Oklahoma Senate. ___11:20 p.m. TuesdayRepublican Maria Elvira Salazar has defeated Democrat Donna Shalala for a House seat in Florida. ___10:25 p.m. TuesdayRepublican Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez has won a House seat in Florida, defeating freshman Democrat Debbie Mucarsel-Powell. Republican Ronny Jackson has won a House seat in West Texas, where he moved after leaving the White House in 2018. The solidly Republican district is currently held by Mac Thornberry, one of six GOP congressmen in Texas retiring this year.
Expect US election to have consequences for troops overseas
During his election campaign four years ago, Trump vowed to bring all troops home from endless wars." But their approaches differ, and the outcome of the Nov. 3 election will have long-term consequences not only for U.S. troops, but for the wider region. “We’re getting out of the endless wars,” Trump told White House reporters recently. With an eye toward the election, Trump has accelerated his push to bring troops home. “Everybody wants to be able to bring troops home from Afghanistan and elsewhere.
Despite COVID crisis, Congress seeks to do its day job
On Friday, the House passed a $259 billion funding bill for foreign aid and the Interior, Agriculture, and Veterans Affairs departments along party lines. The measure is the first annual spending measure to pass either the House or Senate this year, but it has scant chance of becoming law, serving instead as a springboard for negotiations down the line. And if Trump loses the election, Democrats are likely to wait until the Biden administration is in place before wrapping up the annual bills, which fund the annual operations of federal Cabinet agencies. The Senate Appropriations panel canceled plans for drafting its 12 annual bills after Democrats served notice they would offer amendments on COVID relief and policing reform that Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., deemed too politically troublesome. As a result, Congress is likely to return to Washington in September to handle a stopgap funding bill that would last until December to prevent a campaign season government shutdown.
Former White House physician Ronny Jackson wins GOP runoff for Panhandle congressional race
Ronny Jackson was endorsed by President Donald Trump in his bid for Texas' 13th Congressional District. REUTERS/Joshua RobertsRonny Jackson, the former White House physician and President Donald Trump's onetime nominee for secretary of veterans affairs, has won his bid for the Republican nomination for a solidly red congressional seat in the Texas Panhandle. Jackson and Winegarner were competing for a seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, who is retiring and held the seat since 1995. With just under half of polling locations reporting, Sessions held an eight percentage point lead. Sessions previously represented the Dallas-based 32nd Congressional District since 1996, but lost reelection in 2018 to current U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, a Democrat.
Trump's former doctor wins House GOP nomination in Texas
AUSTIN, Texas President Donald Trumps former White House physician and onetime pick to head the Department of Veterans Affairs won the Republican nomination for a U.S. House seat in Texas in an election that unfolded amid an alarming spread of the coronavirus. Ronny Jackson, a retired Navy rear admiral, defeated agriculture advocate Josh Winegarner in a primary runoff Tuesday in the deeply red Texas Panhandle. Jackson will face Gus Trujillo, who won Tuesday's Democratic nomination for the 13th congressional district in Texas, in the November general election. He returned to the White House medical office, retired from the Navy in 2019 and launched his bid for Congress. He earned a marine biology degree from Texas A&M before graduating from the University of Texas Medical Branch in 1995.
Trump faces pressure over Russia bounties to kill US troops
Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and a small group of other House Democrats met with White House officials as Trump downplayed the allegations. One official said the administration discussed several potential responses, but the White House has yet to authorize any. Intelligence officials told the AP that the White House first became aware of alleged Russian bounties in early 2019 a year earlier than had been previously reported. Bolton declined to comment on that matter, and the White House did not respond to questions. The intelligence officials and others with knowledge of the matter insisted on anonymity to discuss the highly sensitive matter.
GOP lawmakers urge action after Russia-Afghanistan briefing
WASHINGTON Eight Republican lawmakers attended a White House briefing about explosive allegations that Russia secretly offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing American troops in Afghanistan intelligence the White House insisted the president himself had not been fully read in on. Still, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany insisted Trump had not been briefed on the findings because they hadn't been verified. One official said the administration discussed several potential responses, but the White House has yet to authorize any step. Bolton declined to comment, and the White House did not respond to questions on the matter. The intelligence officials and others with knowledge of the matter insisted on anonymity to discuss the highly sensitive matter.
Trump announces major US troop cut in 'delinquent' Germany
WASHINGTON President Donald Trump said Monday he is ordering a major reduction in U.S. troop strength in Germany, a move widely criticized by members of his own party as a gift to Russia and a threat to U.S. national security. The U.S. currently has about 34,500 troops in Germany far fewer than during the Cold War, when Germany was the central focus of American and NATO efforts to deter invasion by the former Soviet Union. Trump faulted Germany for failing to pay enough for its own defense, calling the long-time NATO ally delinquent." In his White House remarks to reporters, Trump suggested his troop withdrawal decision was intended to punish Germany, noting that the presence of American troops is a boost to local economies. The decision was not discussed in advance with Germany or other NATO members, and Congress was not officially informed prompting a letter from 22 Republican members of the House Armed Services Committee urging a rethink.
Influential conservative group endorses Ronny Jackson over Josh Winegarner in runoff for U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry's seat
Ronny Jackson faces Josh Winegarner in a runoff to replace U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, who is retiring after representing the Panhandle in Congress. REUTERS/Joshua RobertsThe Club for Growth is taking sides in one of the highest-profile Republican primary runoffs this summer in Texas. The deep-pocketed national conservative group is endorsing Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician, to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, in his safely Republican district. Jackson has the support of President Donald Trump in the July runoff against Thornberry's preferred successor, Josh Winegarner. Since then, the runoff has seen a slew of endorsements split between Jackson and Winegarner.
Bipartisan lawmakers call on FCC to reverse Ligado 5G decision, citing GPS interference
Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK), House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX), House Armed Services Committee ranking member Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) and Senate Armed Services Committee ranking member Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) talk to journalists in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on July 11, 2018 in Washington, DC. WASHINGTON A bipartisan coalition of lawmakers is threatening to block the Federal Communications Commission's recent decision regarding the deployment of a 5G network that may interfere with commercial and military GPS signals. Last week, the five-member FCC voted unanimously to allow Ligado Networks to deploy a low-power nationwide 5G network despite objections from federal agencies, including the Departments of Defense, Commerce and Justice, as well as major U.S. airlines. The 5G network will use an L-band spectrum that has the potential to disrupt commercial and military GPS signals, therefore raising concerns that the technology will impact U.S. national security. The chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate Armed Services committees, representing both parties, called on the Federal Communications Commission to reverse its unanimous decision in an April 22 op-ed.cnbc.com
Four Republican lawmakers ask Trump to move forward with $10 billion Pentagon cloud contract
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Four Republican members of U.S. Congress, including House Armed Services Committee ranking member Mac Thornberry, sent a letter to President Donald Trump on Thursday urging him to move forward with a $10 billion cloud contract with the Defense Department. FILE PHOTO: House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-CA) chairs a committee hearing on "The National Defense Strategy and the Nuclear Posture Review" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 6, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua RobertsTrump has said his administration was looking closely at Amazon.coms (AMZN.O) bid on the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract after getting complaints from other tech companies. Oracle and IBM Corp (IBM.N) have since been taken out of competition for the contract, leaving Amazon and Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) as finalists. Any unnecessary delay will hurt the countrys security and increase costs of the contract, they added.feeds.reuters.com
Four U.S. lawmakers ask Trump to move forward with $10 billion Pentagon cloud contract
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Four members of U.S. Congress, including House Armed Services Committee ranking member Mac Thornberry, sent a letter to President Donald Trump on Thursday urging him to move forward with a $10 billion cloud contract with the Department of Defense. The letter comes after Trump said his administration was looking closely at Amazon.coms bid on the cloud contract after getting complaints from other tech companies. Since then, Amazon and Microsoft Corp were selected to continue competing for the cloud computing contract and the selection left Oracle and IBM Corp out of the competition. JEDI meets only a portion of the Defense Departments need for cloud services and is an important first step in competing with countries like China, the members said. Any unnecessary delay will hurt the countrys security and increase costs of the contract, they added.feeds.reuters.com