Trump lashes out at GOP after override vote on defense bill

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FILE - In this Dec. 12, 2020, file photo President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington before boarding Marine One. Unemployment benefits for millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet were set to lapse at midnight Saturday night unless Trump signed an end-of-year COVID relief and spending bill that had been considered a done deal before his sudden objections. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump lashed out at congressional Republicans on Tuesday after the House easily voted to override his veto of a defense policy bill.

A total of 109 Republicans, including Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, a member of GOP leadership, joined with Democrats on Monday to approve the override, which would be the first of Trump’s presidency. The Senate is expected to consider the measure later this week.

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. Negotiate a better Bill, or get better leaders, NOW! Senate should not approve NDAA until fixed!!!″

The 322-87 vote in the House sends the override effort to the Senate, where the exact timing of a vote is uncertain.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., wants a vote as soon as Wednesday, but Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders objected to moving ahead until McConnell allows a vote on a Trump-backed plan to increase COVID-19 relief payments to $2,000.

“Let me be clear: If Sen. McConnell doesn’t agree to an up or down vote to provide the working people of our country a $2,000 direct payment, Congress will not be going home for New Year’s Eve,'' said Sanders, an independent who caucuses with Democrats. "Let’s do our job.”

McConnell said Tuesday that approval of the $740 billion National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, is crucial to the nation's defense and to "deter great-power rivals like China and Russia.''