". . . and having done all . . . stand firm." Eph. 6:13


Proposed Child Tax Credit Expansion Would Be a Pro-Life Victory, Say Experts

January 24, 2024

In a rare show of bipartisanship, a bill that would expand the child tax credit (CTC) for low-income families easily passed through the House Ways and Means Committee last Friday by a 40-3 margin, moving it one step closer to a vote on the House floor. Experts say the bill will give a substantial financial boost to parents with multiple kids at a time when the cost of raising a family has risen significantly due to persistent inflation.

As President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris tour the country promoting abortion, experts are noting that the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act of 2024 — part of which includes an expansion of the CTC — provides a potential real-world “win” for helping low-income families provide for unplanned children.

As National Review’s Leah Libresco Sargeant observed Wednesday, “Until now, families have received an automatic cut to their CTC payments every year, because the per-child benefit was not indexed to inflation. It’s ludicrous at the best of times to imagine that raising a child gets cheaper each year. With working parents facing inflationary spikes and yet another formula recall and shortage, the automatic erosion of family support feels like a cruel joke.”

But the proposed CTC expansion will automatically adjust payments to taxpayers to inflation, at least for the next two years. In addition, the bill greatly expands the amount of money a low-income family can receive per child. As Sargeant explains, “With every dollar a family earns above a minimum threshold ($2,500), they start receiving benefits with a 15 percent phase in — thus every $100 dollars earned above $2,500 unlocks $15 of the family’s potential benefit.” For every additional child a family has, an additional $15 would be added on to this benefit. This means that a family with three children would receive $45 for every $100 earned above the $2,500 minimum. Thus, a family earning minimum wage with three children would go from being able to claim $1,800 to claiming $5,400 under the proposed CTC expansion.

The CTC proposal is part of a larger bill focused on tax relief. Among its provisions are the addition of numerous tax deductions that small businesses can make, as well as expanding the caps on expense write-offs. It would also end a COVID-era tax credit program that was “hit by major cost overruns and fraud.”

“American families will benefit from this bipartisan agreement that provides greater tax relief, strengthens Main Street businesses, boosts our competitiveness with China, and creates jobs,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.), a co-sponsor of the bill, said in the press release. “… This legislation locks in over $600 billion in proven pro-growth, pro-America tax policies with key provisions that support over 21 million jobs. I look forward to working with my colleagues to pass this legislation.”

If the bill passes by January 29, it would be retroactive and would apply to parents when they file their 2023 taxes.

“There aren’t many federal wins on the horizon, with Congress snarled in possible shutdowns and the election pending,” Sargeant noted. “… The proposal takes the needs of children seriously and honors the promises that parents struggle to keep to their kids. Pro-lifers and parents both need this win.”

Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.