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US Senate passes National Defense Authorization Act that includes sanctions on Russia & Turkey


The annual Department of Defense funding bill passed the Senate on Friday despite facing Republican-led opposition. It includes sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline and on Turkey, for its acquisition of S-400 missiles.

The $740-billion legislation previously passed the House of Representatives, with 40 Republicans opposing the effort.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) was particularly critical of the bill, specifically an amendment stating that American troops cannot be withdrawn from Afghanistan without congressional approval, a move, he stated, that promotes "perpetual war."

President Donald Trump has been critical of other aspects of the bill. He has stated it should include a repeal of Section 230, which legally protects social media companies by labeling them third-party publishers, for "national security purposes." He also wants the bill to more firmly allow for the withdrawal of troops overseas.

The president has promised to veto the legislation, and he has 10 days to do so. If he chooses to, it will go back to the House of Representatives and the Senate. It will require two-thirds support from both to override the veto and become law.

Passing in the Senate with a 84-13 vote and in the House with with 335 to 78, the bill is considered by many to be close to 'veto-proof' due to its high bipartisan support.