Senate Republicans are awaiting news from the Senate majority leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellPelosi responds to Trump: Let’s push for K checks ‘this week’ Trump attacks Thune: ‘He will be primate in 2022’ Trump overturns relief bill, asks Congress to increase stimulus money MORE (R-Ky.) What will they do if President TrumpDonald Trump Georgia Senate candidate Ossoff supports Trump’s request for K checks The White House wishes Birx well after she announces retirement Pelosi responds to Trump: Let’s press for K checks ‘this week’ MORE vetoes a massive coronavirus aid package and overheads, which could set the stage for a government shutdown.
Two Republican advisers said on Wednesday that McConnell had yet to offer any guidance to the Republican Senate Conference on whether there would be an attempt to overturn Trump’s veto on coronavirus relief and the holiday financing bill, which leaders from both parties hailed as a great achievement this week.
As things are now, McConnell informed senators that they are prepared to vote as soon as December 29 in an overturn of Trump’s veto on the draft annual authorization warrant.
It is possible that senators may also start the process to override the veto on the coronavirus overhead and relief bill, but that remains to be determined.
Senate sources say Trump could guarantee the end of the 5,593-page coronavirus relief and spending package simply by refusing to act on it before the 117th Congress meeting on January 3.
The constitution gives the president 10 days – not counting Sundays – to act on the legislation or it automatically becomes law. If Congress suspends the “sine die” and Trump does not act before the 10-day period expires, the coronavirus project would fail in a “pocket veto”.
Trump should not receive the huge relief and overhead package until Thursday or Friday, because it takes time to register the bulky bill.
If the new 117th Congress meets and Trump has not yet signed the coronavirus relief package, which includes a new round of $ 600 stimulus checks, the legislation would die and Congress would need to pass a new bill in January.
If that happens, Congress will still need to approve another interim financing measure to avoid a government shutdown after the provisional measure expires in the late evening of December 28.
The Senate is scheduled to meet for a pro forma session that day and the leaders could pass another short-term funding bill by unanimous consent at that time – assuming no legislator is opposed.
Senators have been informed that the Senate will meet again on Tuesday, December 29, for a morning business period and that roll-call votes are possible later in the day if they need to override Trump’s veto on the defense bill .
Aides to the Republican Party in the Senate say their bosses received an email on Tuesday alerting them to the possibility.
McConnell also announced the schedule in the Senate floor in the early hours of Tuesday morning, after the Senate approved the coronavirus relief package.
The Republican Party leader explained that the reason for returning to work on Tuesday would be to override Trump’s veto on the defense project, if necessary.
“In the event that President Trump decides to veto this bipartisan bill, it appears that the House may decide to return after the holidays to establish a vote to consider the veto. … In case the President has vetoed the bill, and the House has voted to to override the veto, the Senate would have the opportunity to process an override of the veto at that time, “McConnell said in plenary on Tuesday morning.
Senate President Pro Tempore Chuck GrassleyChuck Grassley Increasing number of lawmakers refuse early access to the COVID-19 vaccine The Democratic Senate says the cyber attack on the Treasury “appears to be significant”. (R-Iowa) on Wednesday suggested that the Senate could vote to override Trump’s vetoes on the defense bill and coronavirus and the overhead package after his return on Tuesday.
Grassley told reporters on a phone call on Wednesday that he had been notified of the possibility of entering a session to overturn a veto to prevent the government from closing.
A spokesman for Grassley later clarified that the senators were notified about returning to work for a possible waiver of a defense bill veto and that time in Washington could also be used to address the coronavirus relief package.
Senate action would depend on the House vote first to overturn Trump’s potential vetoes on coronavirus defense and relief projects. If Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi responds to Trump: Let’s push K checks ‘this week’ Trump overturns aid bill and asks Congress to raise stimulus money On The Money: Bill approval triggers struggle to declare victory, blame Democrats say more relief from COVID-19 is needed after current measure becomes law | Biden economic consultant expects ‘very challenging’ economy early next year MORE (D-Calif.) You can’t get the two-thirds of the votes needed to overturn Trump on any bill, so the Senate won’t act.
If Trump participates in the coronavirus overhead and relief package for 10 days, none of the chambers will be able to act on this project before the new 117th Congress meeting.