Rep. Kevin Yoder of Kansas met with Ivanka Trump at the White House on Tuesday to pitch his bill to expand the federal tax credit that helps parents pay for child care.
The Republican congressman’s meeting with President Donald Trump’s daughter and close adviser lasted about 30-45 minutes, his office said. Also in attendance was Rep. Stephanie Murphy, a Democrat who represents a central Florida swing district.
The White House confirmed the meeting took place, but did not comment specifically on Yoder’s bill.
All three did agree that the child care tax credit should be preserved as the Trump administration and Republicans move to overhaul the tax code, Yoder’s spokesman CJ Grover said.
The bill Yoder and Murphy discussed with Ivanka Trump is the Promoting Affordable Child Care for Everyone Act, or the PACE Act. It seeks to help families pay for the care of children and other dependents by increasing the credit’s value and raising the amount of pre-tax dollars that families can use to pay for such care from $5,000 to $7,500, among other provisions.
Ivanka Trump is expected to meet later this week with members of the tax-writing House Ways & Means Committee, Grover said. She’s been lobbying conservatives and lawmakers on Capitol Hill to double a different child-related tax credit from $1,000 per child to at least $2,000 per child.
“Ivanka has been a leading voice within the administration for working families — especially working mothers — and I was certainly encouraged to hear firsthand her thoughts on our efforts to help make child care more affordable,” Yoder said in a statement to McClatchy’s Kansas City Star after the meeting.
Yoder is running for re-election in a suburban Kansas City district that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton narrowly won in November. The child care tax credit proposal is one of several pieces of legislation he’s pushing that have support from Democrats, including an email privacy bill and a bill that would remove per-nation caps on green cards for highly skilled immigrants.
Yoder said that child care costs have boomed over the past 25 years. He hopes that increasing the child care tax credit would directly help lower expenses more than six million American families who took advantage of it last year.
“Making it refundable would open up avenues for even more families who are struggling to get ahead,” said Yoder who has two young daughters. “As we move forward, I’m going to continue making the case that making child care more affordable should be a part of our economic agenda and look forward to working with the White House in any way that we can achieve that goal.”