President Trump vowed to support working families by beefing up crucial supports like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC). In an unsurprising twist, Trump has reneged on that promise and proposed slashing the EITC and CTC by $40 billion. Instead of supporting working families, he’s proposing raising taxes on the most vulnerable.
The 22 percent of North Carolina households who qualify for these income tax supports are working hard to raise their children and put food on the table. In stark contrast, the President’s budget proposes tax cuts for the country’s wealthiest taxpayers and estates.
Working family tax credits pay off in the short term by alleviating poverty. They also produce long term benefits. Low-income families receiving supports such as the EITC tend to have improved infant and maternal health, better school performance and college enrollment, and increased work and earnings in the next generation.
This budget proposal shifts a huge burden of responsibility onto state governments. Not the least of which will be renewed urgency for state leaders to establish a state Earned Income Tax Credit. As I wrote about last week, we’ve just fallen behind South Carolina in this regard.
The White House has made it clear that it won’t prioritize working families. Instead, it’s making it harder for them to make ends meet, while the wealthy get another break. North Carolina families need their lawmakers to embrace their responsibility to us all. We need leaders who understand that building a strong economy means making sure all families can thrive, not just rich ones.
Marion Johnson is the Policy Advocate for the Budget & Tax Center, a project of the North Carolina Justice Center.