Child Tax Credit Expansion is a Win for Liberals
Millions of Americans with children are beginning to receive new government payments this summer. Expansion of the child tax credit puts up to $300 per child in the hands of all American parents under an income threshold. The average low- or middle-income American household with kids will receive $423.
The expansion of the child tax credit is a win for liberals. It promises to reduce inequality for low- and middle-income families. But the payments are set to lapse after a year. Liberals may have to fight to extend the expanded credit into the future.
Payments to families that were left behind
The child tax credit was created in 1997 to help offset the financial burden of raising children. The credit has never benefitted families who do not file income taxes, however. Families who are too poor to pay income tax and file IRS forms need governmental support the most, but were unable to get it for years.
President Biden included expansion of the credit in his March 2020 COVID-19 relief package. This expansion allows families who do not file taxes to receive direct support payments. The tax credit has long been a help to middle class families, and these payments extend the same help to low-income families.
A boon to poor and middle class families
One goal of these payments is to reduce inequality and offer relief to low-income families. Biden and Congressional lawmakers hope these payments will even the playing field for struggling parents. They also hope it will pave the path to a brighter future for children growing up in poverty.
Another goal associated with the tax credit is to keep middle class families from falling into poverty. The typical family spends more than $200,000 to raise a child, which puts a strain even on the middle class. The tax credit helps middle class families maintain their quality of life and avoid financial strain or ruin.
Preparing to fight for extension
The child tax credit’s expansion is a win for liberals. Reducing inequality and setting families up for more prosperity isn’t just good for parents and children, but also good for the economy. But the payments are set to lapse after a year, potentially limiting the real progress poor families can make.
Biden is pushing to extend the payments to at least 2025 and would like to make them permanent. But some Republican lawmakers are fundamentally opposed to what they consider handouts. The results of the expansion may speak for themselves, but liberals will need to be ready for a fight in Congress.