Warnock wants expanded child tax credit included in Biden’s ‘Build Back Better’ plan

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Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) urged President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to make renewing monthly child tax credit payments a priority as the White House continues negotiations over the president’s social safety net package.

Warnock, alongside Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Ron Wyden (D-OR), sent a letter asking the White House to secure an extension of the expanded Child Tax Credit as part of Biden’s revamped Build Back Better package, a $2.2 trillion spending bill that passed the House but later stalled in the Senate.

“The consequences of failing to extend the (tax credit) expansion are dire, particularly as families face another wave of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the senators wrote. “After historic progress, it is unacceptable to return to a status quo in which children are America’s poorest residents and child poverty costs our nation more than $1 trillion per year. Raising taxes on working families is the last thing we should do during a pandemic.”

The child tax credit expanded under Biden’s COVID-19 relief package, the American Rescue Plan. Families received $3,000 per child for children from the ages of six to 17 and $3,600 for children under the age of six. Families got the full credit if they made up to $150,000 for a couple or $112,500 for a family with a single parent.

For eligible households, half of the money came in the form of direct payments each month through the end of 2021. The monthly payments began in July and ended in December. The payments were $250-$300 per child.



The other half is claimed when filing a 2021 income tax return.

Without passage of the Build Back Better package, the credit reverts to its smaller pre-pandemic form, and there will be no monthly payments. The senators said the expanded tax credit represented “the biggest tax cut for low- and middle-income families in modern American history.”

Warnock was among 41 Senate Democrats who urged the White House to make the expanded tax credit permanent last March.

In Muscogee County, the legislation affected an estimated 13,800 households and 45,000 children. The average credit amount was $3,300, Warnock’s office previously told the Ledger-Enquirer, citing methodology from Co-Equal, a data analytics group that assists Congressional offices.

The program benefited more than 2 million children statewide, Warnock’s office said.

Warnock visited Columbus and other portions of the state last summer to speak with parents about the expanded tax credit.

“We don’t get to pass legislation this transformative for ordinary people often,” he said during a September visit to Columbus. “Experts say that this will cut child poverty in half. I don’t think you can cut child poverty in half one year and then go back and double it the following year. That is poor public policy, and it creates uncertainty in the household budgets of people like this.”

Senator Raphael Warnock, (D-GA), spoke with local media outside the Museum of Aviation after touring Robins Air Force Base June 2, 2021. He’s calling on President Joe Biden to bring back the expanded child tax credit.
Senator Raphael Warnock, (D-GA), spoke with local media outside the Museum of Aviation after touring Robins Air Force Base June 2, 2021. He’s calling on President Joe Biden to bring back the expanded child tax credit.
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