Trump signs $1.3 trillion spending bill
ABC News – President Donald Trump says he signed the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill Friday afternoon after earlier issuing a surprise veto threat of the legislation via tweet raising the prospect of a government shutdown.
In his remarks, the president said there is a lot to be unhappy about and vowed to “never sign another bill like this again” but cast his final decision in terms of homeland security. As he took to the podium in the Diplomatic Room he called it a “ridiculous situation”.
Trump was flanked by Vice President Mike Pence, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
The president vented about his distaste for the 2200-page bill and the ways it runs counter to his agenda.
The president also repeated talking points about reversing deep cuts to military spending and giving a pay increase to troops.
“My highest duty is to keep Americans safe,” he said.
As for the border wall, he says the administration will be “getting to work on Monday” with repairing and bolstering border wall. “We have $1.6 billion for the wall starting immediately. It’s short term funding but it’s immediately.”
Republican leaders spent the past 24 hours selling the bill as a win on border security, despite the fact that it fails to give the president the wall he promised.
The announcement comes after Trump had lunch with Defense Secretary James Mattis who has been a strong proponent of the omnibus and its funding for the military — the largest increase in defense spending in 15 years.
Democrats blasted the president for what they see as his hypocrisy on a solution for the fate of some 700,000 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program recipients – young undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.
“Mr. President, you terminated protections for DACA recipients, you cynically held them hostage for your costly boondoggle of a wall, and you have undercut every bipartisan attempt to fix the mess you created,” Sen. Patrick Leahy, vice chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said. “You can fix this. Or at the very least, don’t unilaterally make things worse, yet again.”
Sen. Tim Kaine accused the president of being asleep at the wheel.
“Seriously though, Rip Van Winkle, did you just awake from a long slumber? We gave you a deal last month that offered all the border funding you wanted AND a path to citizenship for Dreamers. YOU (or your minions) tanked it and turned us down. Art of the Deal-Wrecker!” Kaine tweeted.
After Trump tweeted Friday morning some members of Congress like Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, encouraged him to veto the measure.
ABC News’ John Parkinson contributed to this report.
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