Republican senators, for the first time in four years, defied President Donald Trump and sided with Democrats in both chambers of Congress in a successful attempt at overriding the president’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act, according to Newsmax.
The veto override of the $740.5 billion bill, which was the result of an 81-12 vote, comes in what will likely be the last days of Trump’s presidency. Because of the veto override, the defense bill will now become law.
The president attempted to convince GOP allies to fight against the veto override in the days leading up to the Senate vote, but apparently, they either didn’t listen or didn’t care what the outgoing president wants at this point in time. The Senate vote on New Year’s Day is rare, as it’s not typically a day when the upper chamber would hold a full vote, making it even more clear that they had zero intentions of caving to the president’s demands.
One of those demands from Trump was that the bill includes language that would have repealed the legal liability protections offered to social media companies known as Section 230. The president made clear from the beginning that he would veto the NDAA if Section 230 repeal language wasn’t included.
So, at the very least, the president held true to his threats, like he usually does.
“Here’s what the Senate is focused on: completing the annual defense legislation that looks after our brave men and women who volunteer to wear the uniform,” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said before taking the final vote on the bill on Friday.
BREAKING: The Republican-controlled Senate easily turned aside the veto, dismissing Trump's objections to the $740 billion bill
The 81-13 vote in the Senate followed an earlier 322-87 override vote in the House of the widely popular defense measure
— Wayne Dupree Media, LLC (@WayneDupreeShow) January 1, 2021
“We’ve passed this legislation 59 years in a row. And one way or another, we’re going to complete the 60th annual NDAA and pass it into law before this Congress concludes on Sunday,” the majority leader added.
The veto override comes as tensions rise between McConnell and his Republican colleagues in the Senate versus the president and his House GOP allies in the upcoming attempt to stage an objection to the counting of the Electoral College votes on January 6.
The president has heavily promoted the idea via social media and reportedly over 100 House Republicans have agreed to take part in the event. In contrast, McConnell has warned Republican senators to steer clear of joining in those efforts, even though Missouris Sen. Josh Hawley has vowed to join his House colleagues in objecting on that day.