Romney proposes a plan to provide up to $350 in monthly child benefits

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Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, speaks during a news conference with a group of bipartisan lawmakers to unveil a COVID-19 emergency relief framework in the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
  • Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah released a proposal on Thursday to provide $US350 monthly child benefits.
  • This plan contrasts with legislation Democrats have already drafted to provide $US300, fully refundable, monthly child tax credits.
  • A former policy advisor to Congress’ Joint Economic Committee said that Romney’s plan is more financially responsible and aligns with conservative beliefs.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah released a proposal on Thursday to provide up to $US350 in monthly benefits per child in each American household, pitching an alternative to the Democratic proposal of $US300 monthly benefits.

Romney’s proposed legislation, called The Family Security Act, would provide monthly cash benefits of $US350 for each young child, and $US250 a month for each school-aged child. According to the press release, the benefits of the proposal would include cutting child poverty by up to one-third, providing equal treatment for both working and stay-at-home parents, and reforming outmoded federal programs.

“Now is the time to renew our commitment to families to help them meet the challenges they face as they take on most important work any of us will ever do—raising our society’s children,” Romney said in a statement. “This proposal offers a path toward greater security for America’s families by consolidating the many complicated programs to create a monthly cash benefit for them, without adding to the deficit.”

This proposal comes after drafted legislation from Democrats on child benefits, which proposes a fully refundable, monthly $US300 benefit.

In the outline for Romney’s plan, the child monthly benefit would:

  • Allow parents to apply for the benefit four months prior to a child’s due date;
  • Be administered monthly through the Social Security Administration;
  • And be reduced by $US50 for every $US1,000 above the current child tax credit income phaseout thresholds.

Patrick Brown, a former senior policy advisor to Congress’ Joint Economic Committee, told Insider that Romney’s plan is an improvement of the Democrats’ plan because it creates a more straightforward way of getting more assistance to low-income families.

“Having a monthly benefit paid out through the Social Security Administration makes a ton of sense, so I’m excited to see it rolled out,” Brown said. “I’m hoping conservatives and progressives get behind it because I think that this is a way that we should be tackling child poverty and making it more straightforward for low income workers to get assistance for their families.”

Conservatives should welcome Romney’s plan, Brown said, because it is more fiscally responsible than Biden’s plan given that is consolidates benefits by getting rid of the State and Local Tax Deduction.

“Putting more money in the pockets of parents with kids is a profoundly conservative goal and vision, and I think that there will be some senators who get behind it for that reason because it is both financially responsible and because it is authentically pro-family and pro-child,” Brown said.

Democrats have strongly supported President Joe Biden’s child benefits plan, but with Republicans wary of the price tag, as Insider previously reported, Romney’s $US254 billion proposal faces uncertainty.