Why Trump vetoed bipartisan defense spending bill
Trump Blocks Document, But Congress May Overcome Presidential Veto
US President Donald Trump vetoed the military budget bill on Wednesday, calling it a “gift” to China and Russia.
The National Defense Bill, which enjoys widespread bipartisan support, provides for $ 740 billion in funding for military programs and a 3 percent increase in military salaries. The document also defines Pentagon policy on issues such as troop numbers, weapons systems and personnel issues..
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calls presidential veto “overwhelming irresponsibility”.
“Trump is using his last hours in office to wreak havoc. Among other things, he is denying our military personnel long-awaited wage increases and bonuses for work in dangerous conditions; our families on paid family leave, childcare, housing and health care; and our veterans get the benefits they need and deserve, ”Pelosi said in a statement. “The presidential veto also deprives our country and our allies of the tools to protect global security, including cybersecurity.”.
Trump has long threatened to veto the bill unless it repeals the provision of section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects social media from liability for user generated content..
Republican Senator James Inhof, who chairs the Armed Services Committee, spoke out in support of the bill, saying that repealing the provision should be considered separately..
“The National Defense Bill has become law every year for 59 consecutive years because it is vital to our national security and our troops. This year should not be an exception, says Inhof’s statement. – You can’t refuse our servicemen what they need. Never. This bill consolidates all the remarkable gains that our military have made thanks to the leadership of President Trump, and sends a strong message of support to our military personnel and their families. “.
In an explanation of his veto, Trump also reiterated his opposition to a provision allowing the renaming of certain military installations named after Confederate leaders..
“I have clearly expressed my opposition to politically motivated attempts to erase history and desecrate the enormous progress that our country has fought for in realizing our fundamental principles,” Trump said..
Pelosi said Trump’s veto runs counter to the country’s values, as it blocks “the renaming of military bases and facilities named after those who served on the side of the Confederacy.” She added that the initiative enjoys the support of the overwhelming majority of the population, representatives of both parties in Congress, the military and the military leadership..
Trump also said the bill undermines his authority to recall U.S. troops stationed overseas..
“I am against endless wars, and so is the American public,” Trump said. “Despite opposition from both parties, this law seeks to limit the president’s ability to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, Germany and South Korea. This is not only bad, but also unconstitutional policy “.
Many Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, urge the president to sign the law.
Both houses of Congress passed the document with enough votes to overcome the presidential veto.
Pelosi said Wednesday night that the House of Representatives will hold a vote on Monday to overcome Trump’s veto. Senate is expected to consider this issue on Tuesday.
Legislators have until January 3 when the new Congress will be sworn in..
News Service; Voices of America