Revive The Child Tax Credit

What should have been a figure piece of the Biden agenda died when Democrats failed to extend their child tax credit in any of their legislation this year. The loss of the child tax credit was devastating as it allowed working families the support they needed and slashed child poverty. Most of what seems to have stopped the child tax credits renewal was outsized coverage of a minority of people who received it buying nonessentials. I must admit the anecdotal stories of some misusing the money, especially coming from Sen. Joe Manchin, who was a needed vote, made it harder for me to support its renewal.


But what does the data say about how families used the money? And if the aim is to reduce poverty, is it wrong for families to use any of their income for wants if they receive aid?

Taken from the IRS

First, the data 91% of low-income families used the CTC for needs. (food, utilities, rent, debt, school, and childcare) The aid from the tax credit helped the most vulnerable afford their basic needs, but sadly the smears from conservatives killed it. While I think it is ok if Americans who receive it use some of their money on other wants, I get the blowback and understand how that undermined the program. If the reasoning is that some recipients are choosing to waste their money or not work, it is worth working with conservatives to get a bill more to their liking because the aid was a blessing for many families. Senator Romney has been in bipartisan talks with Senator Bennet to revive the child tax credit. While means testing, work requirements, and other requirements might be difficult pills to swallow, they make a more sustainable credit (one likely that will need 60 votes and will be able to draw Senator Manchin back) that still supports Americans. Even if it is not as generous, it still helps the most vulnerable Americans while showing the Democrats can deliver on their values and help their voters. I hope they take a serious look and give real effort to pass even a slimmed-down version of Romney’s bill.



Political Activist

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