The Top 7 Moments on Twitter During the State of the Union

By Nicolas Martinez

Last night, President Biden’s State of the Union Address reiterated the crucial need for policies that invest in people and families. Among other things, families and workers need quality child care, paid leave, and home and community-based care. In his address to Congress, President Biden  made clear that his administration prioritizes programs that ensure prosperity, good health, and overall wellbeing for all communities and people in the United States. As the president said, “We’re building an economy where no one is left behind.” Our country’s public benefits, tax, and health coverage programs are critical to achieving these goals.  

The federal policies and programs enacted in the first two years of Biden’s presidency dramatically reduced poverty and hardship, narrowing racial disparities, and improving long-term outcomes for children and families. Now, it’s time for Congress to get the job done.  

Here’s a look back at seven of the top tweets last night during the State of the Union that highlighted the need to enact the economic, social, and racial justice policies that are critical to people with low incomes, communities of color, and immigrant families and children: 

1.  Stephanie Schmidt, CLASP’s director of child care and early childhood education, highlighted the need for a new vision of the care economy. Parents must have the ability to raise a family with adequate sick days, and not need to win the “boss lottery” and hope for paid leave:

2. When President Biden said, “And we pay for these investments in our future by finally making the wealthiest and the biggest corporations begin to pay their fair share.” Indivar Dutta-Gupta, CLASP’s executive director, had it right, the Biden Administration can deliver historic economic progress if he stands firm on raising corporate taxes and adequately funding the IRS:

3. This tweet from Alycia Hardy, CLASP senior policy analyst for child care and early education, got it right: when we don’t invest in policies that help workers and families live, thrive, and ensure economic security for all, we are betting against ourselves:

4. We had some thoughts when President Biden compared the United States with the rest of the world:

5. There were also some parts of the speech where we were disappointed, particularly on immigration:

6. This moment when the president brought up mental health care. We should take a critical look at the role of law enforcement in mental health care systems, which have been complicit in racism and discrimination, and perpetuate negative narratives about Black Americans, specifically young Black people with mental health conditions. Congress should take law enforcement out of mental health responses:


7. Finally, CLASP applauds the president for doubling down on a commitment to families. The expanded fully refundable Child Tax Credit provided relief to millions of families and children and drove one of the largest drops in child poverty in recent history. It’s time now for Congress to bring back the refundable Child Tax Credit and make those improvements permanent. As Ashley Burnside, CLASP senior policy analyst of income and work supports, wrote, “We know how to eradicate child poverty – we just need the political will to implement proven policy solutions to support families. Allowing child poverty to continue is a policy choice.

It’s time for Congress to act and follow through with policies creating a strong economy that invests in people. Congress and the administration should prioritize robust, sustainable, and transformative child care funding. Congress must pass permanent comprehensive paid sick days and paid family and medical leave laws. Congress must renew the refundable CTC. Congress must enact a pathway to citizenship for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, Temporary Protected Status holders, and undocumented immigrants. Congress must also roll back harmful measures such as the funding in The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act for school hardening and surveillance measures, which are the opposite of “safe.” These measures, which disproportionately harm young people of color and young people with disabilities, conflict with the administration’s commitment to racial equity, and Congress must roll them back.  

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