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Thompson helped over-ride defense bill veto

January 7, 2021
In The News

The passage of the National Defense Act was largely overshadowed by the Coronavirus relief bill but, according to Rep. Glenn "GT" Thompson (R-15), there were some important provisions in that bill.

The bill had been approved by Congress but vetoed by President Donald Trump. Congress voted to override his veto however.

"I voted for the National Defense Act and I also voted to override the president's veto," said Thompson. "I did vote to override the veto because everything the president had expressed concerns about was really addressed within the bill."

China was a major concern.

"We wanted to be sure we did enough to push back on China," said Thompson. "Quite frankly, there were some groundbreaking things in that defense authorization bill.

"Those things range from protecting intellectual property to higher education. Many universities are taking money from the Chinese government. We are concerned about how that may compromise many things going forward. There are a lot of checks and balances on China within that bill."

There was one controversial aspect of the bill that was personal for Thompson -- the re-naming of U.S. Military installations that are currently named for Confederate military heroes.

"The president spoke on the re-naming of a lot of the southern bases that were named for Confederate generals. I have no love for Confederate Generals," Thompson said. "I had one relative who spent time in the Andersonville prison during the war. That was not a good place to be."

Thompson continued, "I was very impressed by what we had negotiated that in the National Defense Act. It called for forming a commission for each one of those bases and bringing in the local communities so they can have a say in what the naming was is in their area. I thought that was a great approach."