It's crunch time. This week, the Senate is expected to take up the 21st Century GI Bill, offered by Senators Jim Webb and Chuck Hagel, after the measure passed the House last week. And, VoteVets.org is right there to keep the pressure on, with a 36-hour ad blitz on the bill.
For the next day and a half, no one in Washington DC will be able to turn on their TV without seeing an ad on the GI Bill that challenges Senator John McCain to back the Webb-Hagel bill. As you know, Senator McCain has his own watered-down measure that only gives a fraction of the costs of college to veterans. As our veterans say in the ad, "We didn't give a fraction in Iraq, we gave 100 percent."
Meanwhile, in key markets in Texas, we challenge Senator John Cornyn to back the Webb-Hagel bill. Senator Cornyn is one of the few Senators representing a large veterans population who has not signed onto the Webb-Hagel Bill.
Why's this bill so important? Let me put it in some personal perspective. One of our veterans in Texas, Alex Horton, is soon going to be using his GI Bill benefits. Those benefits will either cover college for him, or they won't. Here's how Alex puts it:
" As an Iraq War veteran, I'll be attending school in the fall under one G.I. Bill or another. My future has two paths: one is riddled with tuition debt and juggling a full time job with school, and the other is a path paved by benefits earned by my service to this country. Veteran students should not have to make a decision between food and school, and if Senators McCain and Cornyn make the right decision to support this bill, we won't have to."
These benefits are not a hand-out, as some on the other side seem to be implying. The GI Bill of Rights, signed into law by Franklin Roosevelt, promised those who served our nation full education benefits, to allow them the chance to reach for the American dream. Those veterans need to get into schools on their own merits, and need to study and work hard to make their grades. No one can do that for them. But, for their service, for generations, we've made the sacred promise to honor their service with full education benefits.
The Webb-Hagel bill is the ONLY measure that restores that promise, and updates the GI Bill to keep up with the rising cost of education. That's why every single major veterans group supports it. And that's why VoteVets.org, today, is putting on a full-court press.
Here are the ads. Please take a moment to visit VoteVets.org, as well, to support our work.