Democratic lawmakers introduced child care legislation Thursday that would provide federal subsidies to low-income families, a proposal that will compete with the Trump White House's efforts to enact similar policies.
Dubbed the "Child Care for Working Families Act," the Democrats' proposal would provide federal subsidies to families making less than 150 percent of their states' median income.
"Decades of research shows that properly nurturing children in the early years of life is instrumental in supporting enhanced brain development, cognitive functioning, and emotional and physical health. Today, the cost of child care has skyrocketed and too many parents now have to choose between paying for child care or a good-paying job. This bill fixes this national crisis and lays out the path of what early learning in America should look like," said Rep. Bobby Scott of Virginia, the top Democrat on the House Education and the Workforce Committee.
The legislation appropriates $90 billion through 2020 to create a block grant program intended to ensure that no family pays more than 7 percent of its household income on child care. The Senate version has 27 cosponsors, while the House version has 59.
The proposal comes as the White House is renewing its own efforts to address child care, pushing Republicans to agree to rewriting the tax code to allow working parents to deduct child care expenses from their income taxes. The issue has been championed by first daughter Ivanka Trump.