As Congress wraps up its long list of business before the end of the year, it couldn’t be clearer that we’re at a turning point—not only for President Joe Biden’s agenda, but also for tens of millions of children and families.

Nearly 90% of U.S. children have benefited from the enhanced child tax credit, passed by Democrats last spring as part of the American Rescue Plan. That credit has meant monthly payments of up to $300 per child going directly into their parents’ bank accounts for essentials like food, housing, school supplies, and diapers.

The program has been a stunning success. In October 2021, these payments alone kept 3.6 million children out of poverty—decreasing child poverty by nearly 30% compared with October 2020.

Unfortunately, that credit expires this month. Democrats had planned to renew it for a year as part of the Build Back Better Act. But with conservative Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin now joining all 50 Republicans opposing it, it may not be renewed at all.

Read the full piece at Marketwatch.

Karen Dolan directs the Criminalization of Race and Poverty Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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