Trump Pushes For Added Powers In Spending Fights

President Trump’s call for a line-item veto of spending bills is the latest example of his frustration with the rules of Washington.

Trump urged Congress to give him the veto power during an event late last week when signing a $1.3 trillion spending bill that included a number of provisions he didn’t like. He also repeated his call for the Senate to end its filibuster rule that means most bills need 60 votes to pass.

A traditional line-item veto — allowing the president to unilaterally cancel parts of a bill — was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 1998. Since then, presidents and members of Congress have pushed other proposals to give the president greater ability to cancel spending programs, but those efforts haven’t been successful.

While it’s highly unlikely that Trump would receive powers approximating a line-item veto, allies say the president's calls send a message to his base that he hears their frustrations about excessive spending and the obstacles to enacting his agenda.

“He’s showing that he’s concerned with out-of-control spending,” said GOP strategist Ford O’Connell.

The omnibus clocked in at more than 2,200 pages, and received a vote in the House less than 24 hours after it was introduced. Many conservative lawmakers voted against the bill, complaining both about the rushed process and its impact on the deficit.

“Republicans know if they’re not in power, [spending is] just going to continue to explode,” O’Connell said, calling the omnibus "a perpetuate-the-swamp bill."

Read more from Naomi Jagoda at The Hill

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