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McConnell says Senate will pass defense bill despite veto threat

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Schumer to trigger reconciliation process on Wednesday | Four states emerge as test case for cutting off jobless benefits GOP senator: I want to make Biden a 'one-half-term president' McConnell presses for 'actual consequences' in disclosure of tax data MORE (R-Ky.) said on Monday that the Senate will take up and pass a mammoth defense bill despite a looming veto showdown with President TrumpDonald TrumpKushner lands book deal, slated for release in 2022 Biden moves to undo Trump trade legacy with EU deal Progressives rave over Harrison's start at DNC MORE.

McConnell mentioned the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) as he outlined the items left on Congress's year-end to-do list as lawmakers prepare to leave Washington for the year as soon as next week.

"We also expect to receive and pass a conference report on the annual defense authorization," McConnell said about the massive policy bill.

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The GOP leader's remarks come as the House is poised to vote on the bill on Tuesday, paving the way for the Senate to pass it as soon as this week.

The bill, which has passed for 59 years in a row, has garnered a veto threat from Trump because it does not repeal Section 230, a legal shield for tech companies that has become a prime punching bag for Trump and his allies.

McConnell did not address Trump’s veto threat during his floor remarks.

The House and Senate both passed their initial bills with a veto-proof majority.

House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerHouse fails to pass bill to promote credit fairness for LGTBQ-owned businesses 110 House Democrats endorse boost to staff pay Black Democrats press leaders for reparations vote this month MORE (D-Md.) has said he believes they would have the votes in the House to override a veto, in what would be a first during the Trump administration.

Top Senate Republicans have been more circumspect, saying they hope the vote margin is big enough that Trump ultimately changes his mind. The Senate’s initial defense bill passed with 86 votes.

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"I just think it's going to be a big vote,” said Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneSanders won't vote for bipartisan infrastructure deal Bipartisan infrastructure deal takes fire from left and right McConnell warns he's willing to intervene in 2022 GOP primaries MORE (R-S.D.).

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynSenate passes bill to make Juneteenth a federal holiday Harris calls for pathway to citizenship for Dreamers on DACA anniversary Senate confirms Garland's successor to appeals court MORE (R-Texas) gave similar comments reporters on Monday. But pressed if he would be supportive of a veto override, he demurred.

“When he vetoes it, I’ll tell you,” he said.