January 12, 2017
Trump aides to Hill GOP: Make child care more affordable
Top aides to Donald Trump asked House Republicans Thursday to include provisions to make child care more affordable as part of a tax reform package this year — a sign that the incoming administration wants to move quickly to fulfill the president-elect's campaign pledge on the matter.
Stephen Miller, the incoming senior White House adviser for policy, asked Republican House staff to include in its re-write of the tax code later this year a proposal to allow parents to write off their tax bills for some child care costs, according to a transition official familiar. Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, who is poised to become a powerful figure in the Trump White House, had championed the idea as well as a proposal to require companies to provide six weeks of paid maternity leave.
The request was made during a 30-minute phone call Thursday afternoon with staffers on the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee and transition officials. It’s a sign that Trump's team is already working quietly behind the scenes to realize some of his campaign pledges.
“It was a very cordial meeting, and the idea of doing this child care effort and having that be a part of the upcoming tax reform legislation was very warmly received by the Ways and Means folks,” the transition official told POLITICO.
The source also noted that the child care pitch has “been pushed up to a front-burner status, as is evident by the fact that they’re already getting this granular this early.”
A Ways and Means Committee staffer said the panel had a "good conversation" and "we look forward to working with them."
Trump proposed during the campaign allowing parents to deduct from their taxes any child care expenses for children under four, or money spent on taking care of an elderly parent. Trump also wants to give employers incentives to provide child care for their employees, though it's unclear if he would favor using the tax code to do so. He’s also floated the idea of expanding the earned income tax credit for the working poor with kids.
Miller and the Ways and Means panel agreed Trump’s maternity leave idea would likely be pursued separately from tax reform legislation, though nothing was formally decided, the source said.
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