The Corner

Politics & Policy

Good News: House Republicans Restore the Adoption Tax Credit to the Tax Reform Bill

At last, a bit of good news. The adoption tax credit is back in the GOP tax plan:

A tax credit for adoptive families has been retained in both the House and Senate GOP tax bills, following pushback from socially conservative lawmakers and anti-abortion groups.

The credit was initially removed in the House version of the legislation, but an amendment released Thursday from Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) retained it.

Preserving the credit “will ensure that parents can continue to receive additional tax relief as they open their hearts and their homes to an adopted child,” Brady said Thursday during the fourth day of the committee markup.

I deeply appreciate the willingness of Chairman Brady to reverse course. Just as we do our best to call out mistakes when we see them, we should also appreciate politicians who have the wisdom to change their minds. 

There remain critics of the credit who dismiss it as helping mainly upper-middle-class families (it phases out for truly high-income taxpayers), but the sad truth is that adoption is so expensive that it’s out of reach for many in the middle class. Moreover, it’s expensive in part because of layers and layers of government red tape. The credit helps ease the considerable burden that governments have unnecessarily imposed. 

Days ago, we were facing the possibility that a GOP Congress would fund Planned Parenthood while eliminating the adoption tax credit. Thankfully, that intolerable outcome has been averted.

David French is a senior writer for National Review, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

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