Ivanka Trump faces an uphill battle as she tries to build support for her signature issues of affordable child care and paid family leave, courting corporate executives and lawmakers in hopes of generating momentum amid a packed legislative agenda in Washington.
Trump appears to be making headway with one important player, however: her father. In President Donald Trump’s speech laying out his vision for America to Congress last week, he highlighted both issues as having bipartisan appeal, along with defense and infrastructure spending.
“My administration wants to work with members of both parties to make child care accessible and affordable, to help ensure new parents that they have paid family leave,” Trump said to applause.
Meanwhile, Ivanka Trump’s proposal has gotten pushback from several corners. Her plan would allow families to deduct child-care expenses from their taxable income. The amount is capped at the average cost of child care in their state and applies to children younger than 13. Stay-at-home parents would also be eligible for the deduction.
Low-income families would be able to receive a refundable tax credit of 7.65 percent of their child-care costs, though stay-at-home parents are not eligible for this benefit. In addition, her plan would create savings accounts of up to $2,000 a year. Contributions would be tax-deductible and any earnings would be tax-free.
“It’s smart to use the tax system for child-care policy,” Sheila Marcelo, chief executive of health care marketplace Care.co, told CNBC. “I disagree that a deduction is not necessarily the most effective way if we’re trying to address the cost of care.”