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April 5, 2024

The US Is Failing Substance-Exposed Infants

Key Points Read the full pdf. Introduction The stark human and societal cost of the drug epidemic is undeniable, directly taking over 100,000 lives each year since 2021.1 Due to infrequent and inconsistent testing,2 there is no reliable count of how many children are exposed to substances in utero, but, even before the current drug epidemic began,…

February 7, 2024

Child Tax Credit Bill Would Increase Marriage Penalties for Working Single Mothers

H.R. 7024, the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act of 2024, was passed by the House last week and is now moving to the Senate for consideration. The bill would change the Child Tax Credit (CTC) in several ways. The two most contentious changes are a one-year lookback for the refundable portion of…

February 6, 2024

Research by a Top Biden Administration Economist Reinforces the Importance of Work Incentives in the Child Tax Credit and the Safety Net

For the past two years, economist Jacob Bastian has been the main researcher dedicated to trumpeting the virtues of a child tax credit (CTC) expansion. Writing first as an economist from academic perches at Rutgers and Princeton, later as an affiliate of moderate think tanks like the Niskanen Center and the R Street Institute, and…

February 5, 2024

Why We All Rely On the Organized Kindness of Strangers

Our church caught fire [i] a few weeks ago. The pastor and a few other leaders had just gotten out of a Monday night meeting when they found the sanctuary was filled with smoke and the entrance to the church was covered in flames. Fortunately, firefighters[ii] responded to the immediate 911 calls and saved the…

January 31, 2024

How Should State and Local Governments Respond to Illegal Retail Cannabis?

Introduction Legal cannabis has become a fact of life in much of the United States. The District of Columbia and 24 states now permit the sale of recreational marijuana; they, and 14 additional states, also permit marijuana sale for supposedly medical purposes. Of course, the Food and Drug Administration has not actually approved marijuana for…

January 29, 2024

The Value of a Bachelor’s Degree

Key Points As public confidence in higher education has declined, Americans have become less sanguine about the bachelor’s degree and skeptical of its potential return on investment. Nonetheless, four-year degrees continue to be associated with significant economic and noneconomic benefits for individuals and communities. For those who want to attend college, have adequate financing options, and can finish their degrees, the benefits of…

January 29, 2024

Let’s Not Turn the Child Tax Credit Into Welfare

A renewed effort to expand the child tax credit (CTC) is currently making its way through Congress. The proposed policy would increase benefits for low-income families—especially those with multiple children—automatically grow the credit with inflation, and most contentiously, eliminate the work requirement for families who had earnings in the prior year. In debating these changes and even…

January 26, 2024

Please Congress: Make Fiscal Sanity a Priority

Sometimes I don’t understand Republicans in the House of Representatives. When they are threatening government shutdowns, they make a great show of saying their highest priority is getting a handle on out-of-control federal spending, reducing the deficit, and bringing down our national debt. And yet, when an obvious opportunity falls in their lap to reduce…