- The House passed a massive $662 billion defense bill last night after last-minute changes placated the White House and ensured President Obama's ability to prosecute terrorist suspects in civilian courts.
The vote was 283-136 and reflected the strong support for annual legislation that authorizes money for the men and women of the military, as well as weapons systems and the millions of jobs they generate in lawmakers' districts.
It was a rare instance of bipartisanship in a bitterly divided Congress. The Senate was expected to pass the measure today and send it to Obama.
The House vote came just hours after the administration abandoned a veto threat over provisions dealing with the handling of terrorism suspects.
Obama had sought modifications in the detainee provisions, allowing "domestic law-enforcement" agencies access to suspected terrorists held by the military.
In a statement, press secretary Jay Carney said the new bill "does not challenge the president's ability to collect intelligence, incapacitate dangerous terrorists and protect the American people."
- Associated Press