Law

To save child credit expansion, Democrats ready shorter renewal

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The 2017 GOP tax law boosted the tax credit to $2,000 per child under the age of 17 through 2025 and extended it to individuals making $200,000 and married couples filing jointly with $400,000 in income, phasing out at a rate of 5 percent for each dollar of income above the thresholds.

As part of the March pandemic aid law, Democrats then added an extra $1,600 per child under 6 and $1,000 per child ages 6 through 17, which phases out for individuals making over $75,000 or joint filers earning over $150,000, among other changes.

Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, a lead proponent of the expansion, said in recent weeks that limiting income levels as part of a deal wouldn’t change the program’s impact. Sen. Chris Coons of Delaware said on Fox News that making sure people earning $300,000 or $400,000 per year don’t get the benefit could be a compromise point for Democrats.

One House Democrat has made getting below $400,000 a demand. Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine, said in a letter Thursday to Democrats in his home state’s legislature that the child tax credit should be pared back to only benefit those most in need, criticizing the GOP expansion.

“Currently, the proposal would benefit joint filers making as much as $400,000 per year, which is far beyond the income range of working- and middle-class families this credit was originally intended to help,” Golden wrote.

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