Child Tax Credit Update: Sens. Bennet, Booker, More Urge Biden to Extend Advance Payments

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ting Shen/POOL/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock (12697011h)US President Joe Biden speaks while meeting with members of the White House Covid-19 Response Team at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC, USA, 04 January 2022.
Ting Shen/POOL/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock / Ting Shen/POOL/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

In a letter dated Jan. 26, 2022, Senators Michael F. Bennet (D-Colo.), Cory A. Booker (D-N.J.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Ron Wyden (D-Or.) and Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) urged President Biden and Vice President Harris to extend the expanded child tax credit (CTC) — including advance payments — as a centerpiece of the Build Back Better legislation. Economic analysts and investors are also following the story, as passage of the bill could impact markets.

“The expanded CTC represents the biggest investment in American families and children in a generation,” the senators wrote. “The Biden Administration’s expanded CTC represents the biggest tax cut for low- and middle-income families in modern American history.” 

The senators noted that the consequences of failing to extend the CTC could be severe as families face another wave of the coronavirus pandemic. “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,” the senators continued. “Raising taxes on working families is the last thing we should do during a pandemic.”

The child tax credit was expanded through the American Rescue Plan, which increased the CTC maximum to $3,000 for each child between the ages of six and 17 and $3,600 for each child under the age of six. Monthly payments were sent out July through Dec. 2021. 

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The letter noted that the policy remained popular with the public. “Support for the expanded CTC has averaged nearly 60 percent since the first round of payments, and support for making the program permanent among recipients has averaged 73 percent since July 1,” the letter said.

The policy also had support in Congress, per the letter. “In March 2021, we led a letter signed by 41 Senate Democrats urging you to not only extend the CTC expansion, but make it permanent.”

House Democrats passed the $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Act but the legislation was blocked in the Senate by West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin.

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