Democrats launch tax offensive

Senate and House Democrats on Wednesday unveiled a package of tax cuts aimed at helping the middle class as part of a new political offensive against Republicans.
Three members of the Senate Democratic leadership, Sens. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinSenate Democrats to House: Tamp down the impeachment talk Threat of impeachment takes oxygen out of 2019 agenda Senate Democrats request watchdog, Red Cross probe DHS detention facilities MORE (Ill.), Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNo agreement on budget caps in sight ahead of Memorial Day recess Ex-White House photographer roasts Trump: 'This is what a cover up looked like' under Obama Pelosi: Trump 'is engaged in a cover-up' MORE (N.Y.) and Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayOvernight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — Senators unveil sweeping bipartisan health care package | House lawmakers float Medicare pricing reforms | Dems offer bill to guarantee abortion access Bipartisan senators reveal sweeping health care package Senate chairman says bipartisan health care package coming Thursday MORE (Wash.) are leading the effort “to challenge Republicans to join them in cutting taxes for working families, not just the wealthiest Americans,” according to a Democratic aide.
Murray, the ranking member on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, has authored two of the proposals, the 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act and the Helping Working Families Afford Child Care Act.
The first introduces a new tax credit worth up to $1,000 for families in which both parents work.
The second reforms the child and dependent care tax credit to deliver a larger benefit for families. It increases the size of the typical credit from $600 to $2,800 for most middle-income families.
“Our economy has changed a lot in the last few decades, and it’s time for our tax code to change with it,” Murray said in a statement. “Wages for middle class families have been flat even as costs like child care have been rising. And while Republicans continue to call for more tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations.”
Durbin, the Senate Democratic Whip; and Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownOn The Money: Judge upholds House subpoena for Trump financial records | Trump vows to appeal ruling by 'Obama-appointed judge' | Canada, Mexico lift retaliatory tariffs on US | IRS audit rate falls Lawmakers grapple with the future of America's workforce The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Restrictive state abortion laws ignite fiery 2020 debate MORE (Ohio), the ranking Democrat on the Banking Committee, have co-sponsored the Working Families Tax Relief Act. It would expand the earned income tax credit and the child tax credit, extending both indefinitely, according to a summary of the proposal. It would index the child credit to inflation.
Reps. Richard Neal (D-Mass.) and Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) are co-sponsoring the House version of the bill.
“The Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit encourage work, help families make ends meet, and lead to healthier and better educated children,” Durbin said in a statement.
Schumer, the third-ranking member of the Senate Democratic leadership; and Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas), a senior member of the Ways and Means Committee, are pushing the American opportunity tax credit.
It would increase the college tuition tax credit from a maximum of $2,500 to a maximum of $3,000 per year. It would also increase the income threshold for eligible families from $180,000 to $200,000 per year.
Their legislation would extend the credit indefinitely and change its lifetime limit from four years to a $15,000 maximum.
“With tuition costs continuing to rise, middle-class families should be able to take advantage of any savings they can get,” Schumer said in a statement.
“That is why I am introducing the this bill, which will provide real relief for families by expanding the number of people who are eligible for this higher education tax credit and increasing the size of the tax credit itself,” he said.