President Donald Trump said Friday he had “no choice” but to sign the $1.3 trillion spending bill in order to create the strongest military.
The spending bill will secure an increase in military funding by $60 billion and provide U.S. soldiers with a significant pay increase.
“We have, very importantly, a pay increase for our troops. And this will be the largest pay increase for our incredible people in over a decade,” Trump said.
The president had threatened to veto the bill, which passed the Senate early Friday morning, because it didn’t address funding for the DACA program or fully fund the border wall. Trump said he chose to sign the bill because it was a matter of national security.
“We had no choice but to fund our military because we have to have by far the strongest military in the world," Trump told reporters from the White House. "And this will be by far the strongest military that we've ever had.”
He added: "We looked at it, a veto. I looked very seriously at the veto. I was thinking about doing the veto…but because of the incredible gains that we've been able to make for the military, that overrode any of our thinking."