U.S. Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) released a joint statement in response to President Joe Biden’s proposed child allowance plan, which would represent a return to the failed welfare system of the 1990s. In 2017, Lee and Rubio doubled the Child Tax Credit as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which tax return data confirmed has cut taxes for millions of American families.
In the statement, the senators called on their colleagues in Congress to join them and pursue meaningful, bipartisan relief for working families by building on their plan to once again dramatically expand the child tax credit:
“In 2017, the Republican Party delivered historic relief to working- and middle-class American families in the form of doubling the child tax credit. The impact was enormous. Working American households making between $20,000 and $50,000 received the largest increase in tax cuts from the expansion, and families with less than $20,000 in income saw their child benefits skyrocket by nearly 250%.
“Earlier this year, we had the chance to do it again. Our plan would have once more boosted the child tax credit—this time to $3,500 per child, and $4,500 per child under the age of six.
“Every single Republican senator present voted in favor.
“But Democrats chose the alternative: simply handing out cash to parents, including ones already on welfare or in households where nobody is working. This kind of universal basic income makes more Americans dependent on government and severs the vital elements—work, marriage, community, and beyond—required to raise healthy families. In doing so, they unraveled the bipartisan welfare reforms previously passed by a Republican Congress and signed by a Democratic president.
“Now, President Biden is looking to extend this temporary pandemic cash payment for another four years. The dangers at hand are far from new. As then-Senator Biden put it in 1988, the old American welfare system broke down because ‘it only parcel[ed] out welfare checks and [did] nothing to help the poor find productive jobs.’
“A policy vision intended to help American families going forward cannot be based on yesterday’s failures.
“Senate Republicans unanimously affirmed a better way earlier this year—one that delivers relief for hard-working parents, giving them the tools American families need to flourish and provide for their own. Today, we ask all our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to work with us to build on this vision and craft a permanent policy that rewards work and protects families.”