Exclusive–Sen. Bill Cassidy Releasing Paid Family Leave Plan Soon

Tess Finnegan poses with her family on December 12, 2017, in Washington, DC. The US economy is nearing full employment, with its jobless rate the lowest in almost 20 years, but women in the workforce don't fully benefit. Due to the lack of widely available and affordable child care and …
AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) told Breitbart News Sunday that he will soon unveil his and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s (D-AZ) paid family leave program.

Sen. Cassidy revealed to Breitbart News Sunday host Matthew Boyle that he and Sen. Sinema will soon unveil their paid family leave proposal.

Paid family leave serves as a rising issue for Republicans, as President Donald Trump promised to include a paid family leave plan during his last State of the Union address to Congress. Sen. Cassidy said he has continued to work with White House senior adviser Ivanka Trump on passing a bipartisan paid family leave plan.

“We’re going to announce it the week we get back,” Sen. Cassidy said, although he cautioned that he will not reveal too many details until next week.

Sen. Cassidy serves as one of the leaders on paid family leave. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) tapped Sens. Cassidy and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) to serve as co-chairs of a bipartisan paid family leave working group in May.

The Lousiana senator did not say how they plan to finance the program; however, he said that “We don’t raise taxes, we don’t raise the deficit. And we don’t put a mandate on the employers, but what we do do is allow a mother and father to replace some of their income and stay home with their child after the child is born. I do think this is pro-family and pro-life.”

Financing a paid family leave plan without increasing the deficit or raising taxes has served as a thorny issue; although, some proposals have offered dynamic solutions to the that. Sens. Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Mike Lee (R-UT) proposed the Cradle Act, which would pay for a federal paid family leave program by offsetting a parent’s Social Security benefits. The Social Security Administration’s (SSA) analysis of the bill suggested that the bill would have a “negligible” effect on the Social Security trust.

Sen. Cassidy said that having a paid family leave plan in place would help keep workers “attached to the workforce, keeps her seniority and training in place, and she’ll end up with a better salary five years later.”

Cassidy said in contrast to his and Sen. Sinema’s plan, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY) plan would pay for a paid family leave plan by raising payroll taxes, which will impact low-income Americans who vote.

Sen. Cassidy said that Gillibrand pays for it “by significantly increasing payroll taxes. Now, payroll taxes are regressive, if you’re lower income a greater percentage of your money goes to payroll taxes and you probably don’t pay any income taxes, but those folks that difference is a big difference and she wants to significantly increase those payroll taxes. I just think that’s the wrong way to go.”

Breitbart News Sunday airs on SiriusXM Patriot 125 from 7:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M Eastern. 

Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

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