The end of Roe will mean more children living in poverty

“Almost half the United States is ready to outlaw abortion now that the Supreme Court has overruled Roe v. Wade. But many of those states are not willing to give new babies and their families the educational, medical, or financial support they need to lead a healthy life. That could leave tens of thousands of future children unnecessarily disadvantaged and living in poverty.”

“Those births will predominately be in the states with the most draconian post-Roe abortion restrictions. And with a few exceptions, those 22 states rank in the bottom half of states in the comprehensive support they provide to children and their families, according to the State-by-State Spending on Kids Dataset compiled by Brown University’s Margot Jackson and her colleagues. The disparities can be enormous: Vermont spends three times as much money on education, health care, and other economic support for children as Utah.”

“The children born in these circumstances will start life a few steps behind, all because their political leaders strove to ban abortion without offering support to the children who would be born if their aims were achieved.”

What Happens When American Children Learn About Racism?

“First and foremost, Nelsen found that, compared to students who read the more traditional history text, students of all racial backgrounds benefitted from reading the more critical text. Latino and Black youth, for instance, reported a greater willingness to participate in acts of political engagement and were also more willing to express their views on a variety of issues. In another work, Nelsen also found that white students reported a greater appreciation for the contributions that Black, Latino and Asian Americans have made to American society.

Political scientists are not the only ones finding results like this. Nelsen’s findings are consistent with a larger body of research conducted by a team of psychologists from Northwestern University, the University of Georgia and the University of Vermont. In their recent review of the literature on this topic, psychologist Sylvia Perry and her colleagues noted that teaching children about racism can actually increase the empathy they have for members of other groups, as well as their concerns about systemic racism. They point to studies showing, for example, that when white children learn about racism they are more likely to value racial fairness and show more positive attitudes and empathy toward Black people.”

Colorado Legislators Advance Bill To Ban Police from Lying to Minors During Interrogations

“Democratic lawmakers in Colorado are advancing a bill that would ban police from lying to minors during interrogations, a practice that innocence groups say contributes to false confessions.”

‘Why Is Child Marriage Still Legal?’: A Young Lawmaker Tackles a Hidden Problem

“In 2017, all 50 states allowed minors to marry in some cases. Since 2018, six states have banned all marriages before 18: Delaware and New Jersey in 2018, Pennsylvania and Minnesota in 2020, Rhode Island and New York in 2021. Other states have recently tightened permissive child marriage laws, raising ages and adding some safeguards. But most states still allow teens to marry at 16 or 17 if parents and a judge consent. Some allow 14- or 15-year-olds to marry. Nine states still have no minimum marriage age at all, including liberal states such as California — where opponents of ending child marriage include civil libertarians on the left as well as family-first conservatives.

Though fewer minors marry in the U.S. than in the past, child marriage still happens here. The U.S. Census’ American Community Survey estimated that there were nearly 88,000 married teens ages 15 to 17 nationwide in 2019. An April 2021 study by the activist group Unchained At Last, funded by the Gates Foundation, estimated that 297,000 minors were married in the U.S. between 2000 and 2018, and that 60,000 of them were under their state’s age of sexual consent.”

“Levesque and other anti-child-marriage activists argue that too many parents and grooms coerce girls into marriage, for reasons ranging from patriarchal cultural traditions to exploitation. The typical American child marriage isn’t a Romeo-and-Juliet story of teenagers in love, they say; more than 80 percent involve a girl under 18 marrying an adult, often someone several years older. Child marriage, they warn, undermines rape laws. Once child brides are trapped in a coercive marriage, it’s hard for them to escape; minors often find it hard to obtain a divorce, advocates say, and often can’t get into women’s shelters.”

Why Republicans Need a Childcare Proposal of Their Own

“Child care costs exceed those of a mortgage or college in many states. Access to affordable child care is one of the biggest barriers to women’s work, and there’s increasing evidence that the cost of raising children is a barrier to having more kids as well, according to a New York Times survey. Low quality early childhood care situations have lifetime ramifications for children, including worsened health and economic trajectories and an increased likelihood of needing future government assistance.”

“The evidence of improved outcomes for children from universal preschool and universal child care is mixed at best. The preponderance of evidence shows the largest gains for at-risk kids and unclear results for everyone else, and state-based programs haven’t been around long enough to suss out long-term effects.
Moreover, providing generous subsidies to nearly all American families, irrespective of need, will make child care more expensive by increasing demand, which will necessitate larger subsidies over time. This is a recipe for spiraling costs; look no further than our experiments in health care or college to see how quickly costs inflate when the government makes something “affordable.” Exacerbating these dynamics, the administration’s proposal will also constrain child care supply by mandating higher wages and skill levels from providers who already have thin margins as well as potentially limiting religious providers. Faith leaders across religions (Catholic, Muslim, Christian and Jewish) have expressed concern that their ability to continue to provide care will be negatively impacted by BBB. Those providers make up a huge portion of child care providers: A Bipartisan Policy Center poll from last year found that 31 percent of working-parent households used center-based care, and over half, or 53 percent, of these families used one that was affiliated with a faith organization.

To be sure, most parents will be shielded from the effects of rising costs because of the generous subsidies they are receiving, making the policy seem like a win-win on the surface, though they might be affected by the reduced choice providers. But nothing is free. Taxes on the rich and corporations can only go so far, and at some point that money will also need to go toward the historic debt we’ve accumulated. Estimates from the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and Moody’s suggest that the BBB child care provisions alone will cost nearly $1 trillion over 10 years once fully implemented, far exceeding the money to be provided by the tax increases that Democrats have proposed to fund the legislation. The people likely to pay for BBB and the runaway spending in Washington are the very children whom such policies are supposed to benefit.

Policymakers can do better. Republicans should up the ante on what Democrats have proposed with an alternative child care proposal — one that is more targeted, sustainable and also more transformative — by providing greater support and choice to parents.”

Allowing the expanded child tax credit to expire would be a major mistake

“For the past six months, families with kids have received monthly payments from the federal government as part of the expanded child tax credit — a policy that has slashed child poverty in the US.
If Congress doesn’t act, however, this measure is set to expire for future payments near the end of the month. The last monthly payment was scheduled to go out on December 15, after which these installments will end.”

“The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a think tank focusing on social programs, estimates 9.9 million children could fall back into poverty or deeper into poverty if the credit is not extended. It estimates, too, that poverty rates for Black, Latino, and American Indian or Alaska Native (AIAN) children, in particular, will be hardest hit. If BBB doesn’t pass, poverty rates would be 22 percent for Black children compared to 13 percent if it did, 21 percent for Latino children compared to 12 percent, and 18 percent for AIAN children compared to 10 percent.”

Biden’s incoherent immigration policy

“During his early days in office, Biden seemed on track to dismantle the Trump administration’s most restrictive immigration policies. He ended the travel ban on people from mostly Muslim-majority countries, halted most new border wall construction, and reversed the “zero-tolerance policy” that enabled family separations and the “Remain in Mexico” program that kept asylum seekers waiting in Mexico for court hearings in the US. He also released an expansive reform proposal with a path to citizenship for the more than 10 million undocumented immigrants living in the US as its centerpiece.

Then, within weeks of his inauguration, record numbers of unaccompanied migrant children began arriving from Central America, and Biden’s border policies came under scrutiny from both the left and the right.

Suddenly on the defensive, the administration’s posture shifted. It reopened temporary, jail-like facilities — the same “cages” that drew condemnation in 2019 under Trump — to house migrant children. On a June trip to Guatemala, in what would become a common refrain for US officials, Vice President Kamala Harris told migrants, “Don’t come.””

“Biden’s primary tool to manage the border has been a controversial policy that one ex-Trump official, referring to the architect of the former president’s restrictive immigration policy, called a “Stephen Miller special.”

In March 2020, at the outset of the pandemic, Trump used a special legal authority called Title 42, a section of the Public Health Service Act that allows the US government to temporarily block noncitizens from entering the US in the interest of public health. Though Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scientists initially opposed the policy, arguing that there was no legitimate public health rationale behind it, then-Vice President Mike Pence ordered them to implement it anyway.

Under both Trump and Biden, the policy has allowed US immigration officials at the southern border to rapidly expel migrants more than 1.1 million times, without a hearing before an immigration judge. (The exact number of people expelled is unknown because many have been caught trying to cross the border multiple times.)

Even when a federal judge recently blocked the policy from being used to expel families, the Biden administration chose to appeal the ruling, and has continued (with court permission) to enforce the policy while litigation continues.

Biden has carved out some exemptions. Unaccompanied children and people subject to the “Remain in Mexico” policy under Trump are allowed to enter the US while their cases are adjudicated. The Mexican government has also refused to take back some Haitian and Central American families, who have been allowed to enter. But everyone else, including people facing real persecution and danger in their home countries or in Mexico, can be expelled.”

“Haiti has been in a state of upheaval since at least July, when Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated and, amid the power vacuum, gang violence sharply escalated. When a magnitude 7.2 earthquake and tropical depression devastated Haiti in August, the country’s political crisis was compounded by a humanitarian one.

About 30,000 Haitian migrants arrived in Del Rio, Texas, last month, setting up a temporary encampment under the international bridge that connects the US and Mexico. There has also been a dramatic increase in Haitians attempting to cross the Caribbean by boat to reach the US. More than 1,500 such migrants were intercepted by the US Coast Guard over the last year, up from about 400 in the previous year.

Many of the Haitians seeking refuge in the US lived in Latin America for years after fleeing earlier crises in Haiti, including an even bigger 2010 earthquake. But the Covid-19 recession, racial discrimination in Latin America, the realization that going home was no longer an option, and the perception that the US would offer them humanitarian protection all played a role in their decision to move north.

At first, the Biden administration did offer protection. Mayorkas decided to extend Temporary Protected Status — typically used to enable citizens of countries that have experienced violent conflict or natural disasters to live and work in the US — for Haitians who arrived in the US prior to July 29. This offer was designed to cover those who fled the country in the aftermath of the political crisis stemming from Moïse’s killing.

At the time, Mayorkas said “serious security concerns, social unrest, an increase in human rights abuses, crippling poverty, and lack of basic resources, which are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic” had made it dangerous for Haitians to return home.

But the administration maintained a strict stance toward those arriving by boat. Mayorkas said in July that any migrants intercepted off US shores will be turned back or, if they express fear of returning home, repatriated to a third country.”

“Most of the Haitians who were staying in the camp have since been expelled. The US has sent 7,000 back to Haiti since September 19 through the Title 42 policy, despite continued turmoil on the ground. Others voluntarily returned to Mexico to avoid being sent back to Haiti or were allowed to enter the US, at least temporarily.

It’s not clear how US authorities determined which Haitians were to be expelled and which permitted to stay. Some 12,000 Haitians are currently facing deportation proceedings in which they will be able to make their case before an immigration judge for why they should be allowed to remain in the US, via asylum or other humanitarian avenues.”

“Biden has sought to provide legal status to at least some portion of America’s more than 10 million undocumented immigrants.

He backed Democrats’ latest but so far unsuccessful attempt to include a pathway to citizenship for certain categories of immigrants — including DREAMers who came to the US as children, TPS recipients, farmworkers, and essential workers — in a budget reconciliation bill. His administration also recently published a proposed regulation seeking to codify protections for DREAMers who have been allowed to live and work in the US under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which is meant to guard against ongoing legal challenges.

Biden has also attempted to expand legal aid resources for immigrants and limit the reach of immigration enforcement inside the US. The administration recently launched an initiative to provide unaccompanied children facing deportation with a government-funded lawyer in eight cities across the US, and has sought to narrow the categories of undocumented immigrants who should be prioritized for arrest, issuing new US ICE guidance meant to focus resources on those who pose public safety threats. And on Tuesday, the administration ended mass worksite raids, which the Trump administration used to arrest hundreds of undocumented immigrants at once.

Such policies, Psaki said during a September 20 briefing, show that Biden remains “absolutely committed” to “putting in place long-overdue measures to fix our immigration system — to make it more moral, humane, and workable.”

But his actions on the border have told a different story: a push to improve the lives of only certain immigrants who are already integrated into American society, while keeping others out of sight and out of mind — even if that means embracing policies designed by the Trump administration.”