COVID-19 Relief Spending Pushed Poverty To Record Low In 2021

WASHINGTON — Poverty fell to a brand new low final year because of new federal spending handed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, in keeping with new federal knowledge launched Tuesday.

Extra unemployment advantages, stimulus checks and a month-to-month baby allowance helped push the poverty rate to 7.8% in 2021, in keeping with an annual Census Bureau poverty measure that accounts for tax advantages and stimulus funds. The rate had been 9.1% in 2020.

Democrats included the varied reduction insurance policies in a $1.9 trillion invoice referred to as the American Rescue Plan, which handed Congress on a party-line foundation in March 2021. The invoice represented Democrats’ imaginative and prescient of a extra humane political financial system that higher helps dad and mom and laid-off employees.

Republicans pilloried the Rescue Plan as an excessive amount of spending on an financial system that was already enhancing, they usually have blamed it for the report worth inflation that has tanked shopper sentiment this year.

Economists have mentioned that sure, the invoice did contribute to inflation, although there’s an ongoing debate over how a lot costs would have risen anyway on account of pandemic-related provide chain issues.

Democrats have celebrated early estimates suggesting that their momentary adjustments to the kid tax credit score, which supplied month-to-month funds to folks within the second half of final year, produced a report decline in baby poverty. But inflation has remained a high concern for voters.

This is a breaking story that shall be up to date.

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