WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump in a New Year’s Eve message mirrored on his accomplishments in workplace, calling them “historic victories,” whereas his successor, President-elect Joe Biden, struck an upbeat tone in looking forward to 2021.
After weeks of vowing to win his combat to stay in workplace, Republican Trump mentioned in a video posted on Twitter: “We have to be remembered for what’s been done.”
Trump, who has but to formally concede his November election defeat to his Democratic rival, returned to Washington early from his Florida resort amid a combat with Congress over a protection invoice and coronavirus support checks.
Speaking from Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Biden paid tribute to healthcare employees and inspired individuals to get vaccinated in a short look together with his spouse, Jill Biden, on the long-running ABC particular “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2021.”
“I’m absolutely, positively confident – confident – we’re going to come back and we’re going to come back even stronger than before,” mentioned Biden, who takes workplace on Jan. 20.
He repeated his name for vaccines to be distributed extra shortly.
Trump, who had COVID-19 in October, ceaselessly performed down the severity of the pandemic and oversaw a response many well being specialists have criticized as disorganized, cavalier, and generally ignored the science behind virus transmission.
But in his remarks, he famous that the United States has produced a COVID-19 vaccine in report time and he had appropriately predicted it might come earlier than the 12 months ended.
The United States has been one of many nations worst-hit by COVID-19 and leads the world in fatalities, with greater than 340,000 deaths formally attributed to the virus.
Trump was initially scheduled to attend a New Year’s Eve occasion at his Mar-a-Lago resort.
The White House has given no purpose for why he returned to Washington early, nevertheless it coincides with Trump’s combat with Congress over his veto of a serious protection invoice and his demand for elevated COVID-19 stimulus checks, in addition to a spike in tensions with Iran.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the highest Republican within the chamber, dealt a probable demise blow on Wednesday to Trump’s bid to spice up coronavirus support to Americans, declining to schedule a swift vote on a invoice to boost aid checks to $2,000 from the $600 included in an $892 billion aid package deal handed by Congress earlier this month.
TENSIONS WITH REPUBLICANS
Trump’s fellow Republicans in Congress have largely caught with him by 4 turbulent years, however he lashed out at them in current days for not absolutely backing his unsupported claims of election fraud, rejecting his demand for greater checks, and for shifting towards the veto override.
McConnell on Thursday once more rejected a vote on a standalone invoice that might enhance the stimulus checks, calling it “socialism for rich people” and “a terrible way to get help to families who actually need it.” The invoice was handed by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives on Monday.
McConnell additionally mentioned there must be nothing controversial about approving the $740 billion National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which Trump vetoed as a result of it doesn’t repeal sure authorized protections for tech firms.
“We’ve enacted an annual NDAA for 59 straight years and counting,” McConnell mentioned. “In the next few days – the easy way or the hard way – we’re going to do our job once again. This body will fulfill our responsibility to the men and women who protect our country.”
The House voted to overturn Trump’s veto on Monday. The Senate will convene once more on Friday at Noon EST for a uncommon New Year’s Day session wherein lawmakers are anticipated to solid the primary of two procedural votes geared toward overriding the veto. If that succeeds, the Senate is predicted to carry a second procedural vote on Saturday adopted by a closing vote on passage.
Republican Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri has mentioned he’ll object to Biden’s victory when Congress convenes to formally tally the Electoral College votes on Jan. 6, which might set off a prolonged debate within the Senate however has no probability of overturning the outcomes. CNN reported that some 140 Republicans within the House are anticipated to interact in related techniques.
Some Republican senators had supported Trump’s name for a rise within the stimulus funds, notably David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, who face runoff elections in Georgia on Jan. 5 that may decide which occasion controls the Senate underneath Biden.
But Perdue’s marketing campaign suffered a setback on Thursday, saying the senator was quarantining after coming into contact with somebody who examined constructive for the coronavirus.
U.S.-Iran tensions, in the meantime, have once more spiked.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Thursday accused Washington of attempting to manufacture a pretext for attacking his nation and vowed Tehran would defend itself though it doesn’t search conflict.
Two U.S. B-52 bombers flew over the Middle East on Wednesday in what U.S. officers mentioned was a message of deterrence to Iran forward of the primary anniversary of a U.S. drone strike that killed high Iranian common Qassem Soleimani on Jan. 3, 2020.
Reporting by Jeff Mason, David Morgan, and Trevor Hunnicutt; Additional reporting by Alexandra Alper, David Brunnstrom, and Susan Heavey; Writing by David Brunnstrom and Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Noeleen Walder, Mary Milliken, Grant McCool, and Kim Coghill.
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