August 3rd, 2009
11:46 AM ET
5 years ago

Obama, veterans celebrate expansion of G.I. bill

FAIRFAX, Virginia (CNN) – President Barack Obama joined hundreds of young veterans marking the implementation of a new "G.I. Bill" on Monday, calling the expanded benefits package part of a "moral obligation to those who sacrificed greatly on our behalf."

The updated version of the famous World War II legislation significantly expand education benefits for men and women who served at least three years in the military after the September 11, 2001, attacks.

It provides as much as a full scholarship at in-state public universities for eligible veterans, service members, reservists, and National Guard members.

The first tuition checks authorized by the measure were mailed on August 1.

The new G.I. legislation, which was signed into law last year, was opposed by many Republicans worried it will deplete retention rates among those currently serving in the military at a time when recruitment efforts are struggling.

Obama, who backed the new benefits package as a senator, celebrated its implementation with a group of student veterans at George Mason University in northern Virginia.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. dominican mama 4 Obama

    Way to go Mr. President!! Thank you for recognizing a "lack" in regards to the way our gov't has been treating our veterans. Evidently, GOP'ers are all for sending our men and women off to die in wars (and killing them while there, thanks Cheney), they talk a lot of trash about supporting the troops BUT THEY DON'T!!! Once a vet comes home it is shameful to realize, based on his treatment, that he was defending our country.

    Stop the hate.

    Obama 2012

    August 3, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  2. jaye

    Obama is doing wonders for our military men and women – Bush sent them to war and deserted them, and Obama is treating them like the priceless men and women they are.

    August 3, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. SMP

    As the wife of a retired Army commander, I would like to state a hard fact to the people who oppose this bill: A large percentage of our military families are on Welfare. Military pay barely covers basic living expenses, much less an education, unless you are a high ranking officer, which means you most likely already have a degree.

    After risking their lives, our brave men and women deserve a chance to improve themselves. This is a great way to give them the chance to do that.

    August 3, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  4. jaye

    Wonder how Bush is enjoying his mansion on billionaire row in Dallas while our troops are being slaughtered in the Bush/Cheney wars?
    Wonder if he's playing golf again....LOL

    August 3, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. Robin in Tampa, FL

    The GOP like to "say" they support the troops, but when it came to actually increasing their benefits they almost unanimously opposed ... so much for Country First.

    August 3, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  6. Sam Sixpack

    BHO is teaching a new generation of gullible Americans not to trust charismatic liars. Too bad the lesson is so expensive.

    August 3, 2009 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
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