The number of Colorado parents eligible for the federal child tax credit could be reduced by nearly 70% if Congressional Democrats and the Biden administration give in to the demands of one of their fellow Democrats, according to a new report.
The broad federal program – which sends monthly payments to parents of children 17 and under – has been a major political priority for U.S. Senator Michael Bennet since the middle of the last decade and was signed into law by President Joe Biden in March as part of a package of pandemic response measures.
Champion Bennet child tax credit extension, calls for permanence of floor speech
The credit is in place for the 2021 tax year, and the Denver Democrat has led the way by offering a five-year extension as part of the $ 3.5 trillion budget reconciliation program that is heading to Congress. But Bennet’s Democratic colleague, US Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) is targeting the CLC in an attempt to cut some $ 2 trillion in revenue from the reconciliation plan.
With the Senate locked at 50-50, Democrats in this chamber need their entire voting bloc to come together for Vice President Kamala Harris to vote to break the tie. This gives the West Virginia Democrat, as well as US Democratic Senator from Arizona Kyrsten Sinema, inordinate influence over negotiations over the reconciliation plan, which contains much of Biden’s national agenda.
Axios reported on Sunday that Manchin was modulating that influence, telling the White House “the child tax credit must include a hard labor requirement and a family income cap of around $ 60,000.”
Researchers from the self-proclaimed “moderate” Niskanen Center, a Washington, DC-based think tank, on Tuesday released estimates based on the Axios report showing that if Manchin was successful, some 37.4 million children across the country would lose help.
Colorado would be particularly affected according to projections established by Robert Orr and Samuel Hammond of the Niskanen Center. Based on the duo’s projections, about 320,000 Colorado children would be eligible for credit under Manchin’s proposal, down 67.9% from the roughly 1.1 million children currently eligible.
This would represent the 13th-largest drop in eligibility percentage in the country and the seventh-largest drop among states with more than one million CTC beneficiaries.
Orr and Hammond indicated that the projections are intended to provide a “rough sense” of the lower end of the sections.
“While such a reform would likely have different income thresholds for single and married tax units combined with a phasing out of the credit, in the absence of more details, these estimates give a rough idea of the magnitude of the reduction of CTC expansion at stake if Manchin’s remarks are taken at face value, “the couple wrote.” Without access to a specific proposal, we are not trying to model the effects of a requirement to work or income, which by its nature would further reduce the number of children with access to credit. “
A spokesperson for Bennet said the Denver Democrat “strongly opposes adding work requirements: he believes punishing America’s poorest children because their family’s income is too weak to qualify them for the CLC is doomed and incredibly compromising for them and for the future of our nation. “
“The CTC’s expansion in the US bailout is already targeting low and middle income families, and this is the proposal Senator Bennet thinks we should expand,” the spokesperson said in an email. . “Many Americans have not seen a real increase in their incomes in fifty years as the costs of raising a family for those in the middle class and those struggling to stay in the middle class have skyrocketed. The Expanded CTC was designed to help parents meet the rising costs of raising children and has been the biggest investment in our country’s families for generations.