President Barack Obama on Wednesday knocked Congress for overriding his veto of legislation allowing families of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks to sue the government of Saudi Arabia, calling the move “a mistake.”
Obama, speaking to CNN’s Jake Tapper during a town hall, was measured in his response to the first successful veto override of his presidency, but was firm about why he disagreed with Congress on the issue.
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“Well, I think it was a mistake. And I understand why it happened. Obviously, all of us still carry the scars and trauma of 9/11,” Obama said. “Nobody more than this 9/11 generation that’s fought on our behalf in the aftermath of 9/11.”
He argued that the legislation opens the door for other countries to also claim the right to sue the U.S. and its military service members for disasters and attacks overseas.
“The problem with that is that if we eliminate this notion of sovereign immunity, then our men and women in uniform around the world could potentially start seeing ourselves subject to reciprocal loss, right?” he said.