Legislation comes as lawmakers eye tax cuts for corporations, wealthy people

In response to today’s reintroduction of the Working Families Tax Relief Act, First Focus Campaign for Children President Bruce Lesley issued the following statement:

“First Focus Campaign for Children applauds Senators Brown, Bennet, Booker, Warnock, Wyden and Durbin for today’s reintroduction of the Working Families Tax Relief Act. The improved Child Tax Credit was one of the most successful investments Congress has ever made in our childrens’ well-being. The bill put forward by these long-time Champions and Defenders of Children as we celebrate Children’s Week makes those improvements permanent and goes even further by expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit so its benefits reach more foster youth and youth experiencing homelessness. The legislation will make huge strides toward addressing child poverty and its lifelong and intergenerational consequences. We look forward to the continued work of these Senators and other Champions in Congress to ensure that in the end all children who need aid can access these tax credits.”

The reintroduction of the Working Families Tax Relief Act comes just one week after Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Suzan DelBene (D-WA) and Ritchie Torres (D-NY) reintroduced the American Family Act, which permanently expands the Child Tax Credit and extends it to everyone in need, even those previously excluded. Under current law, one-third of our nation’s children fail to qualify for the full Child Tax Credit because their parents make too little.

Both bills stand in stark contrast to the House Ways and Means Committee’s recent passage of three tax bills that would extend and expand the 2017 tax cuts that benefit corporations and the wealthiest Americans while excluding these revolutionary tax credits that helped cut child poverty in half.

First Focus Campaign for Children has long supported this legislation, support that American voters share. In a May 2022 survey by Lake Research Partners, respondents favored the expanded and improved Child Tax Credit by a 72-21% margin, with 57% voicing “strong” favorability. Parents favor the policy by 77-18%.

American voters are also deeply concerned about child poverty in the United States, a worry that also crosses party linesAt the time of the poll, poverty was 59% higher among U.S. children than adults, and 83% of poll respondents said they found this fact concerning, with 60% saying they were “very concerned.” Even more — 86% — said they were concerned by the cost of child poverty, which runs an estimated $1.1 trillion a year due to higher crime, poor health outcomes and lower income levels when children grow up.  Democrats expressed concern by a 97-3% margin (concerned/not concerned), Independents by 82-16%, and Republicans by 75-19%.

First Focus Campaign for Children is a bipartisan advocacy organization dedicated to making children and families a priority in federal policy and budget decisions.