Tax Reform Already Providing Families More Opportunities for Their Children’s Education
‘[R]epublican tax reform gave parents more flexibility in paying education expenses. The law builds the foundation for important expansions of the tax-advantaged college savings accounts known as ‘529 plans.’ As a result of tax reform, we’re empowering families to use these tax-exempt accounts not only for college expenses, but also for tuition at private and religious schools, kindergarten through 12th grade. The philosophy here is simple: More choice is better than less.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding the benefits Americans across the country continue to see from tax reform:
“Few subjects are closer to the hearts of parents than their children’s education. That’s why Republicans made sure the historic tax reform we passed last year included a provision, championed by Senator Cruz and others, that will help parents choose an education for their children that makes sense for their family.
“A recent article in the Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky shared the story of one family whose second-grade son had struggled with an undiagnosed learning disability. He’d had trouble keeping up with his public school class.
“So, like many parents facing similar challenges, his family decided to send him to a private school with smaller classes and more individual attention. But that was a tough financial decision. Even though both parents worked, affording tuition was a struggle. Families like this are why Republican tax reform gave parents more flexibility in paying education expenses.
“The law builds the foundation for important expansions of the tax-advantaged college savings accounts known as ‘529 plans.’ As a result of tax reform, we’re empowering families to use these tax-exempt accounts not only for college expenses, but also for tuition at private and religious schools, kindergarten through 12th grade.
“The philosophy here is simple: More choice is better than less. That really is the moral of the story on tax reform -- getting government out of the way, letting families keep more of their own income, and empowering Americans to make the economic choices that make sense for them. Parents know best what works for their children.
“So if we can government get out of the way, so the IRS takes less from families and parents get more control over their kids’ educations, we ought to do it. That young man from Louisville is in fifth grade now. His new private school was able to properly diagnose and approach his dyslexia. He is thriving. And now, thanks to tax reform, school choice will soon get more affordable for families just like his.
“Historically, helping families save for schooling costs has been a bipartisan priority. In 1996, I worked with Sen. Bob Graham and other friends across the aisle to create Section 529 in the first place. Five years later, I sponsored legislation to let families tap into 529 plans tax-free. It ended up in the 2001 tax cuts -- again, a bipartisan affair.
“But this time was different. No Democrats in the House or the Senate -- not one -- voted for this historic tax reform law. They tried to block this law to help families across America afford the schooling of their choice. This time, Republicans had to do it all by ourselves. Fortunately, we got it done for American families.”