“Lets reward parenthood, marriage, and work.” - Sen. Josh Hawley
American working-class families are the heart and soul of America as a nation. Conservatives have long held the belief that family is the highest core value to hold onto. And that is the hard truth. But like many American institutions today, American families could use some savin' as well.
Marriage rates are at historic lows, parents often say they have fewer children than they want, and working parents find raising kids more and more costly. While there has been nothing done to save those values of the American family in decades.
Government public policies should promote families, and give parents the power to raise their children as they see fit. Even though many parents say they would prefer to stay home to raise their young children, they simply can’t afford it. It’s time for a new approach that gives families the choice of how to raise their kids.
Start with the problem. Washington’s policies over the last few decades have contributed to the brittle condition of the American family. Our tax and trade policy has rewarded out-sourcing, off-shoring, and labor arbitrage.
Democrats, for their part, try to make family life more affordable by pushing both parents into the full-time workforce while subsidizing commercial childcare. Not surprisingly, this is the family policy of choice for the Democrats’ upper-income, college-educated voters. And many existing federal policies in fact require both parents to be in the workforce to receive childcare benefits.
These policies, like the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, also require children to be enrolled in commercial childcare.
“Starting a family and raising children should not be a privilege only reserved for the wealthy,” Hawley said in a statement. “Millions of working people want to start a family and would like to care for their children at home, but current policies do not respect these preferences. American families should be supported, no matter how they choose to care for their kids.”
“That is why I’m proposing a new approach, a Parent Tax Credit—one of the largest tax cuts for working families in American history,” Hawley added.
The Parent Tax Credit is a fully refundable per-parent tax credit available to households with children under the age of 13. The credit has an annual value of $6,000 for single parents and $12,000 for married parents. Unlike other proposals that send parents no-strings-attached cash, families MUST WORK to receive the Parent Tax Credit and must work consistently to qualify.
Households must report prior-year earnings equal to or greater than income from an average of 20 hours per week of work at the federal minimum wage to even qualify.
“This is not welfare.” - Sen. Josh Hawley
“It is a long past time for conservatives’ policy priorities to match their rhetoric. Conservatives have bemoaned the travails of the American family for years. Now it’s time to do something about it. By rewarding parenthood, marriage, and work, the Parent Tax Credit is a start,” Hawley said in closing.