June 22, 2019
Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi released the following statement marking the 75th anniversary of the signing of the original GI Bill by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on June 22, 1944:
“Seventy-five years ago, while our brave troops landed on the beaches of Normandy and waged war against tyranny and oppression around the world, with the stroke of his pen, President Roosevelt signed the GI Bill into law, unleashing the economic power of nearly 23 million heroes and their families for generations to come. The GI Bill is a sacred promise that our nation made to honor the service and sacrifice of our military. In the process, it transformed our economy and our country, laying the foundation for the world’s greatest middle class and providing a ladder of opportunity for those who protect our freedom.
“Today, three-quarters of a century later, we celebrate that monumental achievement with progress. Just a decade ago, the last Democratic Majority passed the Post-9/11 GI Bill, the largest investment in higher education in our history to restore the promise of a full, four-year college education for nearly two million Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families. We were proud to build on that historic progress in 2017 with the passage of the Forever GI Bill to further expand those transformative benefits, close eligibility gaps and increase educational opportunities for Reservists, Guardsmen, Purple Heart recipients, surviving spouses and dependents. Yet, today, our work is not done as VA continues to miss crucial deadlines to expand benefits, leaving countless veterans and their families out in the cold for months on end.
“This momentous anniversary must serve as an important reminder of the promise we made to those who serve and of our responsibility to ensure that every veteran and servicemember receives the care and benefits they have earned. Just as the military leaves no one behind on the battlefield, we must leave no veteran behind when they come home.”