Congressional Democrats have announced plans to introduce legislation on Monday that would provide millions of American families with $3,000 per child as part of a sweeping congressional relief package estimated to cost $1.9 trillion. The move comes amid growing bipartisan calls for child benefits to play a key role in the government’s latest relief measures.
The payments would also apply to couples who file jointly and earn up to $150,000 per year, The Post reported, with payments diminishing for Americans who earn above those set rates.
The proposal, which has support from the White House and Democratic party leaders, was obtained by the Washington Post on Sunday. Americans earning up to $75,000 per year would reportedly receive $3,600 per child under the age of six over the course of 12 months, with payments arriving in monthly instalments, and $3,000 per child between the ages of six and 17.
President Joe Biden has included the child benefits plan in his proposal to Congress, a component that would lift a majority of the nation’s impoverished children out of poverty, according to research conducted by Columbia University. The plan was projected to cost as much as $120 billion per year, according to the Post.
Massachusetts Democrat Richard Neal, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, was expected to introduce the bill on Monday.
Republicans have called for similar legislation, with Senator Mitt Romney (R—UT) proposing a plan that would also provide families with up to $3,000 per child. But Romney’s plan proposes cuts to current welfare programs and food stamps, while the Democratic plan does not.
Some Republicans, however, including Senators Mike Lee and Marco Rubio, have denounced proposals to provide American families with child benefits amid the pandemic, saying their colleague’s plan would undermine “the responsibility of parents to work to provide for their families” while describing the bill as “welfare assistance.”