The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) missed an opportunity to help low-income childless workers, very low-income families with children, and families with young children – all groups where investments could be particularly productive. The child tax credit (CTC) and earned income tax credit (EITC) could be redesigned to lift millions of people out of poverty. Both could be highly-progressive policies designed to focus nearly all benefits on very low-income people. A small share of families could benefit from either policy change, though most families would benefit from one or the other.
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