Have You Called Your Tax Aides Yet? Some Resources to Help You Make the Case for the EITC and CTC

December 4, 2012
by Meredith Dodson, Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns

RESULTS U.S. poverty volunteers across the country continue to focus our efforts on shoring up support for one of the most effective poverty-reduction tools in the U.S. — tax credits for low-income families. New Census data shows that Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) lifted 8.7 million people out of poverty last year. This includes many military families (see this blogpost for examples) and single working parents. Overall, the EITC is the nation’s best tool for reducing poverty among children and that it offers families temporary support working families need to climb out of poverty. These key tax credits face two threats: that critical expansions to the EITC and CTC will expire this year, and that they will face deep cuts in a broader deficit reduction package. The Tax Policy Center estimates that if the improvements enacted under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) expire as scheduled, 11 million working families will lose an average of $854 from their Child Tax Credit, and 7 million families will lose an average of $532 from their EITC — see call-in day last week, and we need to keep up the pressure! After all of our hard work to protect these tax credits will culminate in the few weeks, it’s extremely important that RESULTS volunteers and allies pick up the phone and call the tax aides in their Congressional offices to talk specifically about the EITC and CTC. 

TAKE ACTION: Call the tax aides in your House and both Senate offices about the EITC and CTC. Use our talking points to urge the aide to ask his/her boss to speak to Senate (Senators Reid/McConnell) or House (Representatives Boehner/Pelosi) leadership, requesting that:

1.      They make the expiring improvements to the EITC and CTC permanent

2.      They support a principle that specifically protects the EITC and CTC from cuts in any deficit reduction framework.

You can find the names of tax aides for your members of Congress on the RESULTS Elected Officials page and the call-in number from last week [(888) 743-1097] is still available. If you have already called your tax aides and made your request, follow up with them to see if they and their bosses have taken any action on your request. Need a reminder of how to work with Congressional staff to build a relationship? See our Activist Toolkit: Establish a relationship with the congressional aide. These follow-up calls help ensure that the requests you make of your elected officials are taken seriously and acted upon. If you cannot call, send an email to your members of Congress to protect the EITC and CTC in deficit reduction negotiations using RESULTS [email protected]) or Jos Linn ([email protected]) on the RESULTS U.S. Poverty staff. And, in order to provide RESULTS volunteers and allies with an update on the budget showdown and training on how to create their own laser talks, RESULTS will host a special conference call next Thursday, December 13, at 9 pm ET. This call will be a great follow up for coalition partners and guests from recent outreach events who want a chance to hear the latest on the “fiscal cliff” and how they can impact the debate. To participate, call: (712) 432-3100, passcode 761262.


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