*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.
Mike Papantonio: Child hunger’s gone through the roof in America ever since the expanded child tax credit payments expired. First of all, explain what the tax payments are. People, a lot of people aren’t even familiar with this story.
Farron Cousins: Yeah. This was one of the better parts of the stimulus payments that Americans were getting. It started last August, 300 bucks a month for working families per child. So you had some families getting, you know, six, nine, $1,200 every month in extended child tax credit, which means you wouldn’t get it as part of your tax return. But the payments were more spread out. It went from August to January when it expired. And it lifted millions of children and millions of homes in this country out of poverty. No longer at the poverty line or below it because of these extended payments. They were able to afford their medications, afford food, you know, pay off debts that had been dragging them down for years.
Mike Papantonio: Isn’t this easy math? I mean, isn’t this easy math? I mean, these are families they can’t even, they can’t afford bread. They can’t afford milk. They can’t afford the basic staples. And they did some great studies to find out what happens when you take this money away. 3.7 million kids are affected, 3.7 million kids and we’re sending $40 billion to the Ukraine, $40 billion. And we can’t say, well, let’s carve out a little bit here for our citizens before we go, before we empower the weapons industry. That’s what that 40 billion.
Farron Cousins: Yeah.
Mike Papantonio: Here, Mr. Weapons industry, thank you for the money you’ve given us in our campaign. Go, go make some missiles. We’re gonna buy ’em and sell ’em to Ukraine and God knows what that’s gonna come out.
Farron Cousins: Well, see, and that’s what a lot of the criticism has come from, you know, with this particular administration, the $40 billion, just to use that as the example. A lot of folks on the left, even some on the right are saying, listen, we, we support Ukraine. We want Ukraine to be successful. But.
Mike Papantonio: Come on, man.
Farron Cousins: We literally have children going hungry and you’re giving 40 billion to the weapons industry. Not actually to Ukraine.
Mike Papantonio: It’s being, it’s being ginned up by the weapons industry.
Farron Cousins: Yeah.
Mike Papantonio: Okay. Somebody needs to gin up the story that 3.7 million kids are now gonna move back down to the poverty level. Manchin’s picture is up here because he was one of the people who said, yeah, it’s a good idea to do away with it. But it wasn’t just him.
Farron Cousins: Right.
Mike Papantonio: You know, just to be very clear.
Farron Cousins: You, you had Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema, every single Republican, I mean, House and Senate, every single one of them.
Mike Papantonio: Yeah.
Farron Cousins: But, but this guy right here is running the country. He, he truly is.
Mike Papantonio: Well, he is.
Farron Cousins: Joe Manchin had, has stalled legislation that would actually provide direct payments to Americans because he says, no, you can’t have your extended tax credit because clearly you’re buying drugs with it, is what he said.
Mike Papantonio: Well, yeah. That, that’s exactly it. That this is drug money and everybody’s using it for drug money. Well the point is, midterms. Okay. It just, it’s not gonna be just Manchin. After midterms it’s gonna be an uphill, uphill battle. And we’re gonna see a lot of this reconstruction of cultural issues in midterms.
Farron Cousins: Well and, and look, the Democratic party letting people no longer get cash in hand in an election year.
Mike Papantonio: Mm-hmm.
Farron Cousins: Is about one of the dumbest political decisions I have ever seen in my life. People were getting literally free money from the government. Here you go. And then in an election year and they say, we’re gonna, we’re taking this away. Idiotic.