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Senate to address defense veto, stimulus checks this week – McConnell…

FILE PHOTO: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaks to the media after a lunch with Republican senators on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 30, 2020. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

David Morgan
Reuters . Tue, December 29, 2020, 11:03 AM GMT+1
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday the chamber would vote this week on whether to override President Donald Trump’s veto of a defense policy bill and also address the president’s call for an increase in COVID-19 aid checks from $600 to $2,000.

The Senate convened on Tuesday for a rare year-end session after Democrats pushed for a vote to back Trump’s call for an increase in direct payments for Americans reeling from the pandemic and to weigh whether to override his veto of a $740 billion defense policy bill.

McConnell said senators will vote on the defense bill on Wednesday and would begin this week to address Trump’s request for $2,000 direct payments, as well as liability protections for social media companies and his allegations of election fraud.

Addressing the Republican-dominated chamber, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said it should not adjourn until it addresses COVID-19 stimulus checks and the defense policy bill.

Trump earlier assailed leaders of his own Republican Party to try to get the Senate to accept his demands for bigger aid checks and his defense bill veto.

In a tweet storm about his election loss to Democratic President-elect Joe Biden and the expected vote to override his veto, the president attacked “weak and tired” Republican leaders.

(Reporting by David Morgan; additional reporting by Susan Cornwell;Editing by Noeleen Walder and Alistair Bell)

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