Paid Parental Leave Plan Included in Trump’s 2018 Budget Proposal
President Donald Trump’s proposed 2018 budget would create the first federal plan for paid parental leave, including fathers, in the U.S. Dan Merica reports for CNN and Danielle Kurtzleben reports for NPR.
President Trump’s 2018 budget will push for the creation of a federal paid parental leave program that will provide mothers and fathers after the birth or adoption of a child with six weeks of paid leave, a Trump administration official told CNN.
Ivanka Trump, the President’s daughter and top aide, was the force behind the new parental leave proposal, the official said. The Trump administration officially rolled out their 2018 budget on May 23rd. The paid family leave program will likely face stiff opposition on Capitol Hill, where Republicans have opposed any such program.
“For many families in our country, childcare is now the single largest expense — even more than housing,” Trump has said. “Our [parental leave] plan will bring relief to working and middle class families.”
Ivanka Trump has added that, “As a society we need to create policies that champion all parents, enabling the American family to thrive.”
When President Barack Obama pushed for paid family leave in 2015, both moderate and conservative Republicans criticized the plan.
Here’s the broad outline of what the budget says about the parental leave plan:
- It’s a departure from what President Trump proposed on the campaign trail — back then, he called for paid maternity leave. This parental leave plan would also cover fathers and new adoptive parents.
- Parental leave would be mandatory, but not uniform: “States would be required to provide six weeks of parental leave and the proposal gives states broad latitude to design and finance the program,” the administration wrote in its budget.
- The program would cost about $8.5 billion over 10 years, and according to the budget would be entirely paid for — but that could require some states to raise taxes. Under the plan, the government would set minimum levels for states to maintain in their unemployment trust funds. And if they don’t hit that? “States that are currently below this minimum standard are expected to increase their State UI taxes to build up their trust fund balances,” the budget says. Applying these minimum levels to trust funds would pay for $12.9 billion of the plan, according to the administration.
- The budget includes other savings: Eliminating improper unemployment insurance payments and implementing programs to get people back to work more quickly could potentially pay for $6.2 billion, which could offset some unemployment insurance taxes.
- Still, there are a lot of blanks to fill in if this is really to be viable. The Trump administration has said that the details will still have to be negotiated, according to The New York Times, and that states will design their individual programs.