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"War on Poverty" Resolution

State of Vermont


House of Representatives

Montpelier, Vermont

Concurrent House Resolution

H.C.R. 177


House concurrent resolution commemorating the 50th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s declaration of the U.S. War on Poverty

Offered by: Representatives Taylor of Barre City, Bartholomew of Hartland, Bissonnette of Winooski, Botzow of Pownal, Brennan of Colchester, Buxton of Tunbridge, Campion of Bennington, Canfield of Fair Haven, Carr of Brandon, Christie of Hartford, Clarkson of Woodstock, Cole of Burlington, Condon of Colchester, Connor of Fairfield, Conquest of Newbury, Copeland-Hanzas of Bradford, Cross of Winooski, Cupoli of Rutland City, Dakin of Chester, Deen of Westminster, Dickinson of St. Albans Town, Donovan of Burlington, Ellis of Waterbury, Evans of Essex, Fagan of Rutland City, Fay of St. Johnsbury, Fisher of Lincoln, French of Randolph, Gage of Rutland City, Grad of Moretown, Greshin of Warren, Head of South Burlington, Heath of Westford, Helm of Fair Haven, Hooper of Montpelier, Hoyt of Norwich, Jerman of Essex, Jewett of Ripton, Johnson of South Hero, Johnson of Canaan, Juskiewicz of Cambridge, Keenan of St. Albans City, Kitzmiller of Montpelier, Klein of East Montpelier, Krebs of South Hero, Krowinski of Burlington, Kupersmith of South Burlington, Lanpher of Vergennes, Larocque of Barnet, Lawrence of Lyndon, Lenes of Shelburne, Lewis of Berlin, Lippert of Hinesburg, Macaig of Williston, Malcolm of Pawlet, Manwaring of Wilmington, Marcotte of Coventry, Marek of Newfane, Martin of Springfield, Martin of Wolcott, Masland of Thetford, McCarthy of St. Albans City, McCormack of Burlington, McCullough of Williston, McFaun of Barre Town, Michelsen of Hardwick, Miller of Shaftsbury, Mitchell of Fairfax, Mook of Bennington, Moran of Wardsboro, Morrissey of Bennington, Mrowicki of Putney, Myers of Essex, Nuovo of Middlebury, O’Brien of Richmond, Partridge of Windham, Pearce of Richford, Peltz of Woodbury, Pugh of South Burlington, Quimby of Concord, Rachelson of Burlington, Russell of Rutland City, Savage of Swanton, Sharpe of Bristol, Shaw of Pittsford, Shaw of Derby, Smith of New Haven, Spengler of Colchester, Stevens of Waterbury, Stevens of Shoreham, Stuart of Brattleboro, Sweaney of Windsor, Till of Jericho, Toleno of Brattleboro, Toll of Danville, Townsend of South Burlington, Trieber of Rockingham, Webb of Shelburne, Wilson of Manchester, Winters of Williamstown, Wizowaty of Burlington, Yantachka of Charlotte, Young of Glover, and Zagar of Barnard

Whereas, on January 8, 1964, in his State of the Union Address, President Lyndon Johnson declared an "unconditional war on poverty in America," vowing that "It will not be a short or easy struggle . . . but we shall not rest until that war is won . . . ," and

Whereas, he acknowledged that "Poverty is a national problem . . . but this attack, to be effective, must also be organized at the State and the local level and must be supported and directed by State and local efforts . . . ," and

Whereas, President Johnson declared that "Our aim is not only to relieve the symptom of poverty, but to cure it and, above all, to prevent it," and

Whereas, on March 16, 1964, President Johnson called on Congress to pass the Economic Opportunity Act "to eliminate the paradox of poverty on the midst of plenty in this nation by opening . . . to everyone . . . the opportunity for education and training, the opportunity to work, and the opportunity to live in decency and dignity," and

Whereas, Congress met that challenge and passed the Economic Opportunity Act, and on August 20, 1964, the President signed it into law, stating that "Our American answer to poverty is not to make the poor more secure in their poverty but to reach down and help them lift themselves out of the ruts of poverty and move . . . along the high road of hope and prosperity . . . ," and

Whereas, the War on Poverty created a wide array of antipoverty programs, including the Office of Economic Opportunity, Job Corps, VISTA, Head Start, Follow Through, Legal Services, and Community Action, and

Whereas, the spirit and vision of the War on Poverty stimulated many initiatives that empowered disenfranchised Americans, and included the enactment of laws related to civil rights, education, health care, housing, and Social Security, and

Whereas, for the past five decades, these programs and initiatives have combined to enable millions of Americans resolve crises, cope with financial hardships, improve and stabilize their lives, and lift themselves out of poverty, and are continuing to do so, despite drastic funding cuts, and

Whereas, today, January 8, 2014, is the 50th Anniversary of President Johnson’s declaration of the War on Poverty, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the General Assembly commemorates the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to the Governor’s Council on Pathways Out of Poverty.

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