An “unhappy” President Donald Trump signed the $1.3 trillion spending bill into law Friday, his second about-face in 24 hours on the measure to keep the government open.
The president said he approved the legislation to fund the government through September for national security reasons, as it authorizes a major increase in military spending that he supports. But he stressed that he did so reluctantly.
Trump slammed the rushed process to pass the more than 2,200-page bill released only Wednesday. Standing near the pile of documents, the president said he was “disappointed” in the legislation and would “never sign another bill like this again.”
“We’re very proud of many of the items that we’ve been able to get. We’re very disappointed that in order to fund the military, we had to give up things where we consider in many cases them to be bad or them to be a waste of money. But that’s the way unfortunately right now the system works,” Trump said at the White House. He added that he “looked very seriously” at a veto, but his support for the military spending levels “overrode” his concerns about the bill.
Trump teased a veto a day after the White House had said he would sign the legislation despite his misgivings. He raised the risk of a government shutdown only hours before the midnight Friday deadline. Then the president, who enjoys creating tension and drama, announced he would not veto the bill in an event carried on live television.