Trump Threatens to Veto NDAA Over Section 230

03 Décembre, 2020, 03:05 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Congressional aides expressed scepticism Trump would actually veto the legislation. — Reuters pic

President Donald Trump's threat Tuesday to veto an annual defense bill unless Congress removes legal protections for social media companies drew swift, sharp bipartisan pushback from lawmakers who charged Trump was using leverage over the troops to settle personal scores.

Congressional aides said the final version of the NDAA does not include the Section 230 repeal demanded by Trump.

The threat itself is just the latest in the president's ongoing stance against social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter, companies which Trump alleges are biased against conservative Republicans after the platforms flagged social media posts violating company rules.

But interjecting the complicated tech issue threatens to upend the massive defense bill, which Congress takes pride in having passed unfailingly for half a century.

Despite President Trump's threat to veto the annual defense bill, key lawmakers, including Sen.

"We have toiled through nearly 2,200 provisions to reach compromise on important issues affecting our national security and our military", Reps.

In a joint statement, Washington Democratic Rep. Adam Smith, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and Texas Rep. Mac Thornberry, the panel's top ranking Republican, noted too much is at stake with the legislation to derail efforts now.

The powerful Republican chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Trump referred to the provision as a "liability shielding gift" to "Big Tech".

Senate Armed Services Chair Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., told reporters that while he supports the call for tech services reforms, the provision "has nothing to do with the military". But you can't do it in this bill.

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"We would essentially have to come back and the new Congress, begin from scratch", Reed said, noting it could perhaps be done "quickly".

"Twitter has become a publisher, choosing to fact-check content", she said.

It's typically a widely bipartisan measure, one of the few areas of common ground.

Both chambers passed their respective defense measures with veto-proof majorities, the House by a vote of 295 to 125 and the Senate by 86 to 14.

On Wednesday, the two chambers announced bicameral agreement ahead of final votes. In June, he said he would veto the bill if it still contained a provision to rename military installations named for figures from the Confederacy.

Trump's allies on Capitol Hill, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, have railed against the social media companies, especially during the heated November election. "Our Country can never be safe & secure if we allow it to stand".

"Therefore, if the very risky & unfair Section 230 is not completely terminated as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), I will be forced to unequivocally VETO the Bill", he added, referring to the annual bill that authorizes the Pentagon's budget.

This isn't the first time Trump has threatened to veto the defense bill.

"First of all, 230 has nothing to do with the military".

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