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January 1, 2021

The Senate voted 81-13 on Friday to override President Trump's veto of the $741 billion defense authorization bill.

This is Congress' first veto override of Trump's presidency, which is now in its final days.

Earlier in the week, the House voted to back the legislation. It authorizes pay raises for service members and imposes new limits on how much of the military's construction budget the president can move by emergency order.

Trump said he vetoed the measure because he did not like how it restricts the president's ability to draw down troop levels, as well as the fact that it directs the Pentagon to strip the names of Confederate figures from U.S. military installations. Trump also wanted the legislation to include a repeal of liability protections for tech companies, a completely unrelated issue. Catherine Garcia

December 28, 2020

The House voted 322-87 on Monday evening to override President Trump's veto of the $740 billion National Defense Authorization Act, sending the measure to the Senate.

If the Senate votes the same way, Congress will deliver Trump the first veto override of his presidency.

The defense bill, originally passed by Congress last week, authorizes pay raises for service members. Trump first said he objected to the bill because it calls for dropping the names of Confederate figures from military installations, later adding that he wanted it to include a repeal of liability protections for tech companies that he claims are anti-conservative. Catherine Garcia

December 22, 2020

President Trump suggested on Tuesday night that he won't sign the $900 billion coronavirus relief package passed by Congress on Monday night, saying the bill is a "disgrace" and needs to be amended to include bigger stimulus checks.

The bill includes $600 stimulus checks, an idea that came from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. In a video posted on Twitter, Trump called this amount "ridiculously low," and said the checks should be increased to $2,000. He also declared that there are "wasteful and unnecessary items" in the legislation, adding if he doesn't receive a "suitable bill," the "next administration will have to deliver a COVID relief package, and maybe that administration will be me."

Trump has been busy trying to get the results of the election overturned, and was not involved in negotiations. Aides told The Washington Post administration officials working with lawmakers did not ask Trump for his approval before finalizing the relief package deal. Trump tweeted the video after White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and several other aides left Washington for Christmas break, and one administration official told the Post they were stunned by his message, saying it was "so dumb. So, so dumb." Catherine Garcia

December 21, 2020

The House on Monday night passed a $900 billion coronavirus relief bill and $1.4 trillion spending package that funds the government through next September.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said there is "more work to do, and it will cost money," but the coronavirus stimulus package "will protect jobs and, most importantly, it will meet the needs of the American people — to crush this virus and to do so in a way that brings us all into the future in a very safe way."

The bipartisan package includes $600 stimulus checks and extends unemployment benefits of up to $300 per week. It also extends the moratorium on evictions until Jan. 31, provides $25 billion in emergency assistance to renters, and covers $13 billion in increased food stamps and nutrition benefits. Earlier Monday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the stimulus checks could go out as soon as next week. Catherine Garcia

December 20, 2020

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Sunday evening announced lawmakers have finalized a bipartisan $900 billion coronavirus stimulus package.

"More help is on the way," McConnell said. "Moments ago, in consultation with our committees, the four leaders of the Senate and House finalized an agreement for another major rescue package for the American people." McConnell said lawmakers are now working to "promptly finalize text" and "avoid any last minute obstacles."

The deal includes $600 stimulus checks for qualifying Americans, two people familiar with the matter told The Washington Post, with Congress also extending unemployment benefits of up to $300 per week. Negotiators have been working on trying to reach a deal since the summer. Several benefits that were part of the CARES Act — the first coronavirus relief bill passed in March — are set to lapse before the end of the year. Catherine Garcia

December 7, 2020

Some breaking breakdancing news is just in, courtesy of the Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee on Monday announced that breakdancing is set to debut as an Olympic sport in 2024, The Associated Press reports.

The International Olympic Committee revealed breakdancing, which the organization referred to as breaking, was confirmed as a sport for the 2024 Paris Games after being proposed by the Paris 2024 Organising Committee. Skateboarding, sport climbing, and surfing were also confirmed. The move to add breakdancing for 2024, AP wrote, fit with the committee's "pursuit of urban events to lure a younger audience" for the Olympics.

Previously, breakdancing was added for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, and Monday's announcement said this will be "building on the success of the sport" there.

"It was a true team effort to get to this moment and we will redouble our efforts in the lead-up to the Olympic Games to make sure the breaking competition at Paris 2024 will be unforgettable," said Shawn Tay, the president of the World DanceSport Federation, per CNN.

In total, there will be 329 medal events at the 2024 Paris Games, down from 339 in Tokyo next year, and the International Olympic Committee said it's looking to make the 2024 games "fit for a post-corona world." The Tokyo Olympics are scheduled to begin in July 2021 following a year delay due to COVID-19. Then, it will be three years later when breakdancing officially breaks in. Brendan Morrow

November 23, 2020

Emily Murphy, head of the General Services Administration, notified President-elect Joe Biden in a letter on Monday that her office is prepared to start the formal presidential transition process.

The transition was delayed by several weeks because Murphy would not ascertain that Biden presumptively won, a decision Democrats and Republicans alike criticized for harming national security and slowing down the fight against the coronavirus. Biden can now receive federal funds and have access to government agencies and resources.

Murphy wrote in her letter that she was "never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official — including those who work at the White House or GSA." Shortly after her letter was made public, President Trump tweeted his thanks to Murphy for her "steadfast dedication and loyalty to our country." He claimed she has been "harassed, threatened, and abused," adding that while he will "keep up the good fight" in his attempt to overturn the election results, he is "recommending that Emily and her team do what needs to be done with regard to initial protocols, and have told my team to do the same." Catherine Garcia

November 11, 2020

President-elect Joe Biden has selected Ron Klain to be his White House chief of staff, several people with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times.

Klain is a lawyer who served as "Ebola czar" during former President Barack Obama's second term, leading efforts to guide the country through an outbreak of the disease. In the late 1980s, after graduating from Harvard Law, Klain went to work for Biden, then a senator representing Delaware, and they have remained close confidants ever since.

Biden could publicly name Klain as his chief of staff as early as Thursday morning. The president-elect is expected to announce several top White House staffers in the next few days, but advisers say he likely won't share his Cabinet picks until closer to Thanksgiving. Catherine Garcia

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