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Veterans' Policies, Veterans' PoliticsNew Perspectives on Veterans in the Modern United States$
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Stephen R. Ortiz

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780813042077

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813042077.001.0001

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“Do Something for the Soldier Boys”

“Do Something for the Soldier Boys”

Congress, the G.I. Bill of Rights, and the Contours of Liberalism

(p.199) 8 “Do Something for the Soldier Boys”
Veterans' Policies, Veterans' Politics

Nancy Beck Young

University Press of Florida

This chapter examines the fight in Congress over the creation of the G.I. Bill of Rights, placing the episode in the larger context of postwar reconversion. The chapter argues that the G.I. Bill, long celebrated as an important contribution to social welfare policy in the United States, represented a much more conservative approach than implementing a cradle-to-grave social security system that provided health care for all. Liberals in Congress fought for the latter at the same time the G.I. Bill was being considered. That they lost was no surprise but was in keeping with the important wartime shifts away from the New Deal welfare state and toward a less liberal warfare state.

Keywords:   G.I. Bill of Rights, postwar reconversion, liberalism, Social Security, veterans’ benefits, New Deal, Congress

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