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'Wait and see game' as Warnock urges Biden to not abandon child tax credit

A group of Democratic senators sent White House officials a letter Wednesday urging leaders to make renewing the child tax credit a priority.

WASHINGTON D.C., DC — Millions of Georgia's neediest families received their final monthly child tax credit payment on Dec. 15, but Sen. Raphael Warnock and several other Democrats are now urging the White House not to abandon these struggling families.

Early Wednesday, the group of politicians sent President Joe Biden a letter asking him to make the renewal of the child tax credit a top priority. The push comes as senators begin negotiations on a revised version of the Build Back Better Plan

The letter states that not extending the credit could result in "placing nearly 10 million children back into poverty."

Some Georgia families explained that the credit has been critical in supporting their families during the pandemic, while others in opposition of the bill said people shouldn't get money from the government but instead through employment.

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The child tax credit will need a 50 vote majority to pass legislation in the chamber. The house attempted to extend the credit in the Build Back Better bill which passed without Republicans' support. However, it died after two Democrats opposed it. 

11Alive's political analyst Andra Gillespie explained that the child credit has a shot at moving forward during the revamp of the Build Back Better plan.

“The question is if we break up the bill into components – some of which are popular and some of which are unpopular – the hope is that all 50 Democratic senators would be willing to vote for the popular parts of the legislation. The tax credit was a very popular part of the vote," Gillespie said.

She added that the main caveat is creating "means testing" to appease Sen. Joe Manchin, who voted no to the bill adding that he wanted to ensure people who made six figures did not receive the credit.

“Senator Joe Manchin who would be the 50th vote wants means testing added to the bill, so he doesn’t want couples who making $400,000 or $300,000 a year to benefit from the child tax credit. So, it’s a question of how low does he want that cap to be for it to be acceptable to him," Gillespie added.

She explained to 11Alive that the debate now becomes a "wait and see game," waiting to see what politicians agree on behind closed doors and what ultimately ends up in the revised version of the Build Back Better bill.

On Tuesday during a press briefing, the White House press secretary confirmed senators were in discussions over a revamped version of the Build Back Better bill, but didn't specify whether the child tax credit would be a part of it.

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