By Adam Andrzejewski for RealClearPolicy
Congressional Democrats – during most of the fall in 2021 – backed the $3.5 trillion bill dubbed the Build Back Better Act and tried to make a promise to Americans that states are expected to keep for universal pre-K.
The 10-year spending plan for the so-called “human infrastructure” would have been a massive expansion of the social safety net. So much so, that critics called it a hammock.
It included $200 billion for universal preschool for all 3- and 4-year-olds, a program supporters say would benefit about 5 million children from families of all income levels and save the average family $13,000 when fully implemented.
But states would have been required to foot about 50 percent of the bill, according to CNN.
The failed spending plan also included $250 billion to fund childcare up to age 5. That would be spent giving every family help in some form, planning to keep the cost of child care at or below 7 percent of most families’ income.
In August, moderate Democrat Joe Manchin joined every Republican senator in voting in favor of an amendment that prohibited using federal funds to teach critical race theory in pre-K, elementary and secondary schools. The amendment, sponsored by Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton, passed 50-49, Newsweek reported.
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However, once again, states would have been required to pick up the tab for half the spending on this federal spending initiative. Shifting costs to states is one more way the reconciliation bill played fast and loose with the $3.5 trillion estimate.
Thankfully, it didn’t have enough support in Congress. However, many of the projects will likely be resurrected by Democrats in future bills.
Syndicated with permission from RealClearWire.
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